Actions on Air Quality

05 June 2016

Policies and programmes for improving air quality around the World

In 2012, the World Health Organisation (WHO) estimated that poor air quality causes between 7 and 8 million premature deaths every year. This makes air pollution the leading environmental cause of premature deaths. Exposure to indoor and outdoor air pollution is closely linked to increased occurrences of cardiovascular diseases, such as strokes and heart disease, as well as cancer and respiratory diseases.

Recognising the growing global threat of air pollution, the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) adopted resolution 1/7: Strengthening the Role of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in Promoting Air Quality in June 2014. UNEP was requested to make an overview of the actions taken by governments to promote better air quality. The results are shared in an online catalogue of 194 countries1 . Based on the catalogue, fourteen sub-regional reports and this global summary were prepared describing ten key actions being undertaken by governments around the world to improve air quality