Air Quality Directive

EU environmental policy focusses on developing and implementing a clean air policy framework that reinforces national policies for those aspects of the air quality problem that Member States cannot handle effectively or efficiently alone.

New policy package to clean up Europe's air

·         A new Clean Air Programme for Europe with measures to ensure that existing targets are met in the short term, and new air quality objectives for the period up to 2030. The package also includes support measures to help cut air pollution, with a focus on improving air quality in cities, supporting research and innovation, and promoting international cooperation

·         A revised National Emission Ceilings Directive with stricter national emission ceilings for the six main pollutants, SO2, NOx, NMVOC, NH3, fine particulate matter (PM2,5) and methane (CH4).

·         A proposal for a new Directive to reduce pollution from medium-sized combustion installations, such as energy plants for street blocks or large buildings, and small industry installations.

By 2030, compared to the current situation, measures under the clean air package are estimated to:

  • avoid 58 000 premature deaths
  • save 123 000km2 of ecosystems from nitrogen pollution
  • save 56 000km2 of protected Natura 2000 areas
  • save 19 000km2 of forest ecosystems from acidification