EU rules ‘partially effective’ in improving air quality

EU air quality legislation has succeeded in making member states set up high-quality systems to collect and share data on air quality, but has been less effective at cutting air pollution, according to the European Commission.

The EU executive has concluded that its two Ambient Air Quality Directives “have been broadly fit for purpose” despite a failure on the part of many member states to meet legally binding limits on air pollutants.

In a ‘fitness check’ of the directives, the Commission notes it has 30 open infringement procedures against 20 member states for breaching limits on particulate matter, nitrogen dioxide and sulphur dioxide. Two member states – Slovakia and Romania – are also in breach of the directives’ air quality monitoring requirements. 

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