UN reports good progress on air pollution

Europe on track to meet 2010 Gothenburg protocol targets for SO2, NOx, VOCs and ammonia

Europe is well on track to meet air pollution reduction targets set for 2010 under the Gothenburg protocol, a meeting of the UN Economic Commission for Europe (Unece) long-range transboundary air pollution convention (CLRTAP) was told last week. But the continent’s overall good progress to the targets masks significant variation in individual countries’ performances.

Targets for sulphur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen oxides (NOx), volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and ammonia were set for 34 European countries by the protocol in 1999 (EED 02/09/99). The protocol entered force last year (EED 04/03/05). For EU countries the targets are in most cases equal to or weaker than similar goals set under the national emission ceilings directive five years ago (EED 02/10/01).

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