According to pollution targetsEuropean Commission, many European Union countries are at risk of not reaching their targets for decreasing damaging air pollution for 2020 and 2030.
The reports on countries’ progress towards EU air pollution targets, indicate the member countries need to increase efforts to tackle the approximate 40,000 premature deaths per year by the EU exposure to highly polluted air.
Furthermore, reports show 10 out of the 27 Eu member states will meet the targets for 2020 to decrease air pollution and only 4 – Croatia, Cyprus, the Netherlands, and Finland – would meet the target for 2030, the Commission said. Also Read– Scientists say Siberia’s weather is an “alarming sign”
The conclusion is based on countries’ emissions projections from the Commision last year.
Europe’s air pollution has been under harsher criticism since the arrival of the coronavirus. Researchers say the increased exposure to dirty air can cause diabetes,lung disease and cancer – all of which increase the risk of death from the coronavirus.
Reports show air pollution levels dropped tremendously after the lockdown which decreased road transport and slowed operations at gas-emitting factories. However, as economies resume, nitrogen dioxide levels are rebounding strongly in cities like PAris, Oslo, and Budapest according to research by Helsinki-based Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air.
The EU proposed national emission reduction goals for five major pollutants injurious to human health – sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, non methane volatile organic compounds, ammonia and fine particulate matter.