Social distancing might not just slow the spread of the novel coronavirus – it might also give the environment a break from the pollution of modern life.

Cities across the globe have reported reductions in air pollution as daily life has come to a grinding halt because of the pandemic. Governments around the world have asked people to practice social distancing (or mandated nationwide lockdown measures) to slow its spread.

Keep reading to see how urban environments have changed amid the coronavirus crisis.


Skies are free of smog in some parts of China …

Foto: NASA recorded a sustained drop in the levels of noxious nitrogen dioxide after the Lunar New Year. Source: NASA

Source: Business Insider


… and in Los Angeles.

Foto: The typical smog-filled LA skyline. Source: Shutterstock/J Dennis


Italy’s air quality has also improved.

Foto: An empty street in Rome, Italy. Source: Alberto Lingria/Reuters

Source: Insider


So has the air quality in major cities like New York City, Seattle, and San Francisco as shelter-in-place orders have dramatically reduced car travel.

Foto: Source: Shutterstock.com

Source: NBC News


With less boat traffic, the water in Venice’s canals is clear instead of its usual murky green color.

Foto: Source: REUTERS/Manuel Silvestri

Source: Insider


You can see straight to the bottom, and fish have returned to some parts.

Foto: A view shows clearer waters by a gondola in a Venice canal on March 17, 2020 as a result of the stoppage of motorboat traffic, following the country’s lockdown within the new coronavirus crisis. Source: ANDREA PATTARO/AFP via Getty Images

Source: Insider


Goats roamed the streets, sunbathed on the grounds of a church, nibbled hedges, and trespassed through a few gardens in one Welsh town as human pedestrians stayed home to practice social distancing.

Foto: Mountain goats roam the streets of Llandudno, Wales, on March 31, 2020. Source: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

Source: Insider


Wild turkeys were spotted having some fun on a closed elementary school playground in California.

Foto: Playground in California where the turkeys roamed not pictured. Source: REUTERS/Andrew Kelly

Source: The Guardian


Deer have been spotted hanging out in streets and subway stations in Japan.

Foto: Source: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Getty Images

Source: The Guardian


And Barcelona residents say they have seen wild boars wander their streets.

Foto: A deserted Passeig de Colom is pictured during the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Barcelona, Spain, March 31, 2020. Source: REUTERS/Nacho Doce/File Photo

Source: The Guardian


Ducks wandered into the streets of Paris in the fourth week of a national lockdown in France.

Foto: A duck wanders an empty Parisian street on April 6.

Source: Getty Images


A peacock was also spotted outside a deserted shopping center in Dubai.

Foto: Stores in Dubai are closed to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Source: Getty Images


Cows took over a beach usually frequented by tourists in Corsica, France.

Foto:

Source: Getty Images


This young puma wandered from the mountains outside Santiago, Chile, into the streets while looking for food.

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Source: Getty Images


Londoners also spotted a wild fox in their streets.

Foto:

Source: Getty Images