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Air pollution

Air pollution is the biggest environmental health risk in Europe

Air pollution is hard to escape, no matter where you live. It can seriously affect your health and the environment. Even though air quality in Europe has improved over recent decades, the levels of air pollutants still exceed EU standards and the most stringent World Health Organization guidelines.

European Air Quality Index

NEW MOBILE APP AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD --- How clean is the air you’re breathing right now? How does the air in your city compare with that of a neighbouring city or region? Air pollution is the single largest environmental health risk in Europe. The European Environment Agency's European Air Quality Index allows users to understand more about air quality where they live. Displaying up-to-the-minute data for the whole of Europe, users can gain new insights into the air quality of individual countries, regions and cities.

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Download the Air quality index mobile app 

National air pollutant emissions data viewer 1990 – 2019

This data viewer provides access to the latest air pollutant emission inventory reported to EEA by EU Member States under the National Emission reduction Commitments (NEC) Directive.

Ninety-six percent of Europe’s urban population was exposed to fine particulate matter above the health-based guidelines set by the World Health Organization (WHO), according to the latest annual European Environment Agency (EEA) air quality assessment published today.

Breaches of EU air quality limits for nitrogen dioxide across Europe were predominantly due to road traffic, while domestic heating lay behind the majority of exceedances for particulate matter, according to a European Environment Agency (EEA) assessment on air quality plans published today.

The vast majority of Europe’s urban population is exposed to levels of air pollutants above new World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines, according to an updated European Environment Agency (EEA) analysis on air quality in Europe released today.

Published: 01 Apr 2022

Air pollution is the single largest environmental health risk in Europe, causing cardiovascular and respiratory diseases that lead to the loss of healthy years of life and, in the most serious cases, to premature deaths. This briefing presents the status of concentrations of pollutants in ambient air in 2020 and 2021 by pollutant, in relation to both EU air quality standards and WHO guidelines. The assessment shows that exceedances of standards are common across the EU, with concentrations well above the latest WHO recommendations. Nevertheless, in 2020, lockdown measures adopted to minimize the spread of the COVID-19 impacted on emissions of air pollution from road transport and lead to improved air quality.

Published: 16 Feb 2022

Air quality remains a persistent problem in Europe, continuing to harm health and ecosystems. This briefing reviews the status of air quality plans put in place by countries in situations where air pollution limits are exceeded. It also identifies the sources of air pollutants that lie behind such exceedances. The assessment covers 21 Member States of the European Union , as well as Norway and the United Kingdom . The European level assessment is complemented by case studies providing examples of measures that have led to an improvement in air quality in six European cities.

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