The term “emission” is commonly used to describe the releasing of pollutants into the atmosphere. Recently, however, a new, similar term has appeared in the air pollution lexicon: “immission”. What exactly is “immission”? How is it different from “emission”?

What does emission mean?

According to the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus, “emission” is a noun defined as “an amount of a substance that is produced and sent out into the air that is harmful to the environment, especially carbon dioxide”. In the context of air quality, this naturally refers to the types of pollutants that are emitted by sources such as transport, industry, heating, agriculture, and waste treatment.

What does immission mean?

The term “immission” currently does not yet exist in any English dictionary, but is widely used in the European science community. According to the Umweltbundesamt (UBA), Germany’s environmental protection agency, “immission” is a noun that refers to the impact of pollutants on humans and on the ecosystem. Thus, it can be understood that every “emission” causes an “immission”. Another widely-used term for “immission” is “ambient emission(s)“.

How are emissions and immissions measured?

Air quality monitoring is generally considered to track immission (ambient emission) data, and is informed by direct emission data from other sources. At Breeze Technologies, we offer lower-cost sensors that provide comprehensive, hyper-local immission data on major pollutants. The information is analyzed using advanced algorithms from machine learning and big data technologies in our Breeze Environmental Intelligence Cloud, which quantifies the immission impact of the area as presented in our proprietary air quality index. Through this, you are able to optimize and track the progress and successes of your environmental programs and policies for the long term. Take action on emission events by utilizing our immissions monitoring network today!