Negotiators from the Parliament and Council reached a provisional political agreement on new measures to ensure air quality

The European Chronic Disease Alliance (ECDA) applauds the agreement between negotiators from the European Parliament and Council on new measures to ensure air quality in the EU is not harmful to human health, natural ecosystems, and biodiversity. With the aim to eliminate air pollution by 2050, this agreement marks a significant step towards ensuring a cleaner and healthier future for all Europeans.

The new rules set stricter 2030 limits and target values for several pollutants, including particulate matter (PM2.5, PM10), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), and sulphur dioxide (SO2), compared to current regulations. Notably, for the two pollutants with the highest documented impact on human health, PM2.5 and NO2, the annual limit values are to be more than halved from 25 µg/m³ to 10 µg/m³ and from 40 µg/m³ to 20 µg/m³, respectively.

This move comes at a crucial time as air pollution continues to pose a severe threat to public health. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) Europe region, an alarming 90% of deaths due to environmental factors, totaling 630,000 fatalities, result from NCDs.

The detrimental effects of air pollution extend to our younger generations, with more than 1,200 children and teenagers per year in Europe falling victim to its deadly consequences. Moreover, exposure to air pollution significantly increases the risk of disease later in life, highlighting the urgent need for action to mitigate its impact.

ECDA strongly recommends the smooth adoption by the European Parliament and Council of this agreement. By implementing these measures, we can safeguard the health and well-being of current and future generations and pave the way towards a cleaner and healthier Europe.