Topic report 26/96


Steinar Larssen and Leif Otto Hagen

European Topic Centre on Air Quality

November 1996

This report was prepared under the supervision of G. Kielland, Project Manager,
European Environment Agency

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The European Topic Centre on Air Quality (ETC-AQ) is under contract to EEA inter alia to develop a general approach to air quality assessment on a European scale. Within this activity it is intended

  • to maintain and develop expertise and exchange information with National Focal Points and National Reference Centres for Air Quality and hence develop the air quality aspects elements of the European Environment Information and Observation Network (EIONET),
  • to assist EEA in compiling periodical assessment reports.

To meet these objectives, three initial tasks were identified:

MA1-1 Collect information on requirements for monitoring information and discuss/review with NRCs/NFCs/DGXI/EEA

MA1-2 Report on state of situation - problems and trends

MA1-3 Report on recommendation for approach to be adopted at the European level

The present report is the first result of the task MA1-2, primarily meant for discussion among EEA, the Commission of the European Communities (particularly DGXI and DGXII), the EEA National Focal Points, and other relevant institutions that form EIONET.

The air quality monitoring practice in Europe is summarised and described in detail based upon information collected in 1994 from monitoring networks within 30 European countries. Also the monitoring activities in 8 international programmes are summarised.

The coverage of air quality monitoring in Europe, in terms of time, space, compounds and site categories is substantial for most of the reporting countries. There are a total of close to 5,000 sites for urban/local monitoring and more than 750 sites for regional monitoring. Hot-spot sites (traffic, industry) is less well represented than are general urban background sites. In a number of countries, lead monitoring seems no longer to be well represented and in some countries ozone is not monitored. Ozone precursors are monitored at one or a few regional sites in 7 countries only.

Table of contents

1. Introduction

1.1. Goal and Scope of the Project
1.2. Information Sources
1.3. Methodology of Investorizing Current Monitoring Practices
1.4. The Contents of this Report

2. Requirements to AQ Monitoring in Europe

2.1. EU Legislation

2.2. International Conventions and Monitoring Programmes

2.2.1. ECE-EMEP
2.2.2. Other European Conventions
2.2.3. Other International Monitoring Programmes

2.2. National Requirements

3. Summary of Monitoring Practices in Europe

3.1. Summary on European Scale of Country-Wise Monitoring Programmes

3.2. Country-Wise Brief Summaries

3.3. Summary of International Monitoring Programmes in Europe

3.4. International Monitoirng Programmes, Infividual Description

3.4.1. ECE-EMEP
3.4.2. Other

4. The Air Quality Monitoring Situation in Europe - State and Trends

4.1. State of Air Quality Monitoring in Europe

4.1.1. Coverage
4.1.2. Methods Evaluation
4.1.3. Data Availability
4.1.4. Reporting
4.1.5. Network Description
4.1.6. Use of Models in the Air Quality Assessment

4.2. Shortcomings and Gaps

4.3. Near-future Trends

5. References


The following significant assistance in data collection and preparation of this report is acknowledged:

  • The WHO Collaborating Centre for Air Quality Management and Air Pollution Control, at the Institute for Water, Soil and Air Hygiene (WABOLU) - Federal Environment Agency of Germany, Berlin, by Hans-Guido Mücke and Elisabeth Turowski, for providing their questionnaire as a model for our MA 1-2 questionnaire, and for providing data on the monitoring networks in 5 countries.
  • The National Focal Points and the Reference Centres of the participating countries, and regional offices in some countries (e.g. Spain), that filled out the questionnaire and sent other information.

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