Commission’s plans for clean air inadequate
Quote from Bas Eickhout MEP on Zero Pollution Package
Today, the European Commission has just unveiled part of its "Zero Pollution" package of legislative proposals on air quality, integrated waste management and urban wastewater treatment. Air pollution is the biggest environmental health risk in the EU, causing an estimated 364,200 premature deaths in 2019. Currently, 97 per cent of the urban population in the EU lives with poor air quality.
Bas Eickhout MEP, Greens/EFA Vice Chair of the Environment Committee, comments:
"Every year, hundreds of thousands of people die prematurely from air pollution in Europe. This is a disgrace. For years, far too little has been done to tackle air pollution, yet the European Commission’s reaction is once insufficient. While both the WHO and the European Environment Agency are ringing the alarm bells for health, the Commission is proposing lax air quality standards that are far below what is considered healthy.
“The Commission's failure to act on air pollution undermines the Green Deal and is a concession to corporations and countries pushing for weaker environmental targets. Low air quality standards will also likely result in softer new vehicle emissions rules. This is a knee-jerk reaction to industry and right wing backlash against better environmental legislation. The Green Deal must be about ensuring a healthy environment.”