Tsiknopempti increased smog levels in Athens! "It reached 250mg in some areas," says expert

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The custom of Tsiknopempti, a day dedicated to grilling lots of meat, had an impact on the Athens sky, as recorded by the Athens Observatory!

"What we measured and found was that compared to the usual evening levels, where we have concentrations of around 70 to 90 micrograms per cubic metre, last night (16/2) and earlier, we had very high concentrations that in some areas of Athens exceeded 250 micrograms per cubic metre," said Evangelos Gerasopoulos, Director of Research at Athens the Observatory, to ERT.


Gerasopoulos clarified that the atmosphere cleared in the morning hours.

"Around 11 in the evening we see that the situation in the entire basin of Attica is very difficult, with some areas exceeding 200 micrograms," he said.

"Accordingly, other evenings this winter we see oranges and reds but almost in small concentrations. It is a phenomenon which we have seen in many other cities of Greece," explained Gerasopoulos.

And as he said, in addition to the smoke caused by barbecuing, the smoke from fireplaces and stoves causes a burden on our health.

Tsiknopempti, otherwise referred to as the week of Kreatini, is a special day of the year in Greece, where a large amount of meat is traditionally grilled and consumed, just before the arrival of Great Lent, marking the lead up to Pascha and also the official start of Apokries (carnival season).


The event is always celebrated on Thursday (Pempti) and consists of the word “tsikna” meaning the burning of food. People who fast for 40 days without meat during Easter lent use Tsiknopemtpi as a day to eat as much meat as they want, right before fasting begins.

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