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Climate hazards are increasing in frequency and severity across Europe; new regional overview published

As extreme weather events and other climate hazards are increasing in frequency and severity across Europe, solid information is needed for assessing climate risks and planning for adaptation. The European Environment Agency’s (EEA) new interactive report, published today, gives an updated overview of how climate hazards are changing across Europe’s different regions.

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Cleaner air could have saved at least 178,000 lives across the EU in 2019

Air pollution continued to cause a significant burden of premature death and disease in Europe in 2019. A European Environment Agency (EEA) analysis, published today, shows that improving air quality to the levels recently recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) could prevent more than half of the premature deaths caused by exposure to fine particulate matter.

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Targeted measures can cut carbon emissions and improve social equality

Recycling revenues from energy and carbon taxes to support low-income groups, investing in renovating buildings and in green mobility are among measures that could ensure public support for Europe’s sustainability agenda and a socially just transition. Vulnerable groups may feel the benefit of these measures more than others, as well as from the broader community impacts of improved air quality and reduced environmental noise.

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Water stress is a major and growing concern in Europe

About 30 % of Europe’s population is affected by water stress during an average year. The situation is expected to worsen as climate change is increasing the frequency, magnitude, and impact of droughts. A European Environment Agency (EEA) assessment, published today, presents the current state of water stress in Europe with the aim to put focus on managing water availability risks under the impacts of changing climate.

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EU achieves 20-20-20 climate targets, 55 % emissions cut by 2030 reachable with more efforts and policies

The European Union (EU) achieved its three main climate and energy targets by 2020, according to a new European Environment Agency (EEA) assessment, published today. The 2030 target of a 55 % reduction in net greenhouse gas emissions can be reached if additional efforts are made and new policies are adopted and implemented.

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Europe's sustainability agenda needs knowledge for action and more concrete targets to achieve its ambitions

The European Green Deal has set unprecedented sustainability ambitions for the European Union (EU) and calls for transformational change across society. To realise such far-reaching changes, Europe needs knowledge for action. This means better uptake and use of existing knowledge, new types of knowledge, new ways of creating knowledge, and, in some policy areas, better data and more concrete targets, according to a European Environment Agency (EEA) report, published today.

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Europe’s nature under pressure — challenges and solutions

The European Environment Agency’s (EEA) work and other assessments have shown that European ecosystems are under serious threat. Centuries of exploitation have left their mark on Europe’s natural world and most protected habitats and species are not in good conservation status. The EEA Signals 2021, published today, presents an overview of the problems Europe’s nature is facing and points to strategies to reverse the situation.

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Industrial air pollution in Europe costs society €277 - €433 billion

Emissions of air pollutants and greenhouse gases from large industrial sites in Europe cost society between €277 and €433 billion, in 2017, according to a European Environment Agency (EEA) analysis, published today. About half of the annual cost is caused by just 211 facilities, around 2 % of the largest industrial sites in Europe. The European Green Deal and the Zero pollution action plan are opportunities to improve the situation.

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Pollution and barriers are key problems for Europe’s waters

European water bodies suffer from agricultural pollution as well as pollution from insufficiently treated waste water from cities, industry and scattered dwellings, according to a European Environment Agency (EEA) report, published today. Artificial barriers, together with navigation, abstraction, aquaculture, and invasive alien species cause additional pressures. However, solutions to tackle the problems exist and should be more widely adopted.

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Air pollution still too high in most EU Member States

Concentrations of key air pollutants remain too high in most European countries. According to the European Environment Agency’s official data, published today, most European Union (EU) Member States exceed at least one or more of the EU’s legal limits for pollutants in ambient air in 2019.

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