Reducing global air pollution: the scope for further policy interventions

Amann, M. ORCID:, Kiesewetter, G. ORCID:, Schöpp, W. ORCID:, Klimont, Z. ORCID:, Winiwarter, W. ORCID:, Cofala, J., Rafaj, P. ORCID:, Höglund-Isaksson, L. ORCID:, et al. (2020). Reducing global air pollution: the scope for further policy interventions. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences 378 (2183) e20190331. 10.1098/rsta.2019.0331.

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Over the last decades, energy and pollution control policies combined with structural changes in the economy decoupled emission trends from economic growth, increasingly also in the developing world. It is found that effective implementation of the presently decided national pollution control regulations should allow further economic growth without major deterioration of ambient air quality, but will not be enough to reduce pollution levels in many world regions. A combination of ambitious policies focusing on pollution controls, energy and climate, agricultural production systems and addressing human consumption habits could drastically improve air quality throughout the world. By 2040, mean population exposure to PM2.5 from anthropogenic sources could be reduced by about 75% relative to 2015 and brought well below the WHO guideline in large areas of the world. While the implementation of the proposed technical measures is likely to be technically feasible in the future, the transformative changes of current practices will require strong political will, supported by a full appreciation of the multiple benefits. Improved air quality would avoid a large share of the current 3–9 million cases of premature deaths annually. At the same time, the measures that deliver clean air would also significantly reduce emissions of greenhouse gases and contribute to multiple UN sustainable development goals.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: global air pollution, emission scenarios, policy scenarios, health impacts
Research Programs: Air Quality & Greenhouse Gases (AIR)
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Depositing User: Michaela Rossini
Date Deposited: 29 Sep 2020 15:39
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 17:33

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