Influence of mobility restrictions on air quality in the historic center of Cuenca city and its inference on the Covid-19 rate infections

Néstor Diego Rivera Campoverde, Paúl Andrés Molina Campoverde, Gina Pamela Novillo Quirola, William Fernando Ortiz Valverde, Bryan Michael Serrano Ortiz

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


At the end of 2019 in Wuhan China city, the outbreak of the virus called SARS-CoV 2 was originated, which later became a pandemic. In Ecuador, patient zero arrived on February 14, 2020 and the first mobility restriction imposed by the Government occurred on Tuesday, March 17 of the same year. Throughout the confinement, vehicle mobility restrictions have been modified by government entities depending on the number of infected people. This article presents an air quality study in the historic center of Cuenca city as consequence of mobility changes caused by Covid-19, where a comparison of concentration levels of polluting gases of the first semester of 2018, 2019 and 2020 is made, that allow differentiating and identifying the influence of vehicular flow on air quality. It can also be verified how the decrease in vehicle mobility restrictions influenced the increase in the rate of daily infections. For the study, air quality data published by the public mobility company of the city of Cuenca (EMOV EP) and the communications issued by the Emergency Operations Committee (COE), before and during the confinement, were collected. The acquisition, classification, analysis and interpretation of the data obtained through machine learning techniques was carried out. It can be concluded that while mobility restrictions were more severe, air quality improved and infections rate of decrease. Obtaining that polluting gases such as NO2 and CO produced by vehicular traffic show correlations of 61% and 60% respectively, which means that after 15 days of lifting the restrictive measures, the pollutants increased as well as the number of infected.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)64-71
Number of pages8
JournalMaterials Today: Proceedings
StatePublished - 2022
Event1st International Virtual Conference on Mechanical Engineering Trends, MET 2021 - Virtual, Online, Ecuador
Duration: 24 Mar 202126 Mar 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


  • Air monitoring network
  • Air quality
  • Covid-19
  • Emission
  • Statistical techniques
  • Vehicular flow Type


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