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Cities Skylines 2: How To Get Rid Of Smog

Smog and air pollution can quickly become a problem for your citizens in Cities Skylines 2, so here's how to get rid of it.
Cities Skylines 2: How To Get Rid Of Smog
Colossal Order, screenshot: Alexandra Hobbs

There are a number of aspects that affect the overall happiness of your citizens in Cities Skylines 2. These range from affordable housing, leisure activities, low noise pollution, and little to no smog. But, like with any major city, as it grows and industry expands, it becomes harder to manage these certain aspects.

Smog, or air pollution, is a problem that players will inevitably encounter during their playthroughs. It's emitted from certain types of industry, as well as power sources, and can affect your city's population in a number of ways. You'll begin receiving messages from citizens via Chirper, indicating that the smog levels are too high. So how do you get rid of smog?

How To Reduce Smog & Air Pollution In Cities Skylines 2

First, it's important to know that there's no special building you can construct that will suck up all the smog and air pollution. Instead, you'll need to be smart with your city planning. There are a number of buildings that will give out more smog and air pollution than others, so constructing cleaner buildings will help reduce your overall smog output. But, in the early game, these cleaner buildings won't be available but there are still steps you can take to reduce the air pollution flooding your citizens.

Build Power Stations Away From Residential Areas

One of the first buildings you'll construct is a coal power station. These give off smog and air pollution so you'll want to place it well away from your residential and commercial areas. You'll also want to make sure that the wind by your power station isn't blowing towards any residential or commericial area, as this will carry smog towards these regions.

Build Wind Turbines

If the layout of your city permits it, consider building wind turbines instead of fossil fuel power stations. You'll need a landscape that has strong enough winds to generate enough energy for these to be useful, however, but they're much cleaner alternatives. 

Unlock The Advanced Pollution Management Perk

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Advanced Pollution Management will help reduce overall air pollution in your city. (Picture: Colossal Order, screenshot: Alexandra Hobbs)

Once you've unlocked the Boom Town Milestone, you'll be able to make use of the Advanced Pollution Management perk. This instals industrial filters into industrial zones, which helps to reduce air and ground pollution. Be warned, though, it also produces more garbage so make sure your landfill sites can handle the increased demand.

Public Transport: Electric Buses

Having enough public transport is a great way to reduce the amount of vehicle traffic on the road, but you can go a step further. Once you've built a bus station, you'll be able to upgrade it to allow for more electric-powered buses to be used. 

Enact The Combustion Engine Ban Policy In Residential Districts

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More useful policies will become available as you level up your city. (Picture: Colossal Order, screenshot: Alexandra Hobbs)

Once you've levelled up your city to the Small City Milestone, you'll unlock a policy for your created districts called "Combustion Engine Ban." This policy will prevent fuel burning vehicles from entering areas where the policy is in place, unless they belong to residents or businesses of that area. It's a great way to reduce pollution and traffic in set areas. 

Expand Your City

Smog and air pollution is easier to manage when you've got more space to play with. Make sure you're expanding your available tiles enough so that you can begin spreading districts out more, and can place power plants and other smog-inducing buildings well away from residential and commercial districts. You can always relocate buildings such as power plants, stations and more, to less crowded areas.

Curious to know a little bit more about Cities Skylines 2? Check out our review.