Ten EU countries continue to breach National Emission Ceilings Directive limits
Air pollution from sources such as transport and agriculture is still being emitted above legal limits in 10 European Union (EU) Member States according to new data published by the European Environment Agency (EEA) recently.
Image © @Grimme Group
Under the National Emission Ceilings Directive (NECD) (2001/81/EC), EU Member States have individual air pollutant emission limits, or 'ceilings', restricting emissions for four important air pollutants: nitrogen oxides (NOx), non-methane volatile organic compounds (NMVOCs), sulphur dioxide (SO2) and ammonia (NH3).
As of 2010, all Member States are required to meet their emission ceilings, but preliminary 2014 data and final data for 2010-13 in the EEA’s new briefing ‘NEC Directive reporting status 2015’ shows that a number of countries consistently breached their limits for NOx, NMVOCs and NH3 in all these years.
The main reasons for the exceedances are emissions from road transport (NOx) and agriculture (NH3). Nitrogen dioxide (NO2), the harmful component of NOx, directly harms health as high concentrations can cause inflammation of the airways leading to respiratory conditions and cardiovascular disease. In addition, NOx forms fine particulate matter and ozone in the atmosphere. Both pollutants have adverse effects on human health. NH3, which mainly stems from the use of fertilisers and the handling of animal manure, also forms particulate matter in the atmosphere. Moreover, both pollutants have impacts on ecosystems as they contain nitrogen.
Latest News from
Letter from President Donald Tusk to EU leaders ahead of their informal dinner in Tallinn22/09/2017 14:10:00
Prime Minister Ratas has asked me to chair our dinner ahead of the Tallinn Digital Summit, which is why I am writing to you.
eu-LISA and Eurojust are taking cooperation further21/09/2017 16:15:00
The European Agency for the operational management of large-scale IT systems in the area of freedom, security and justice (eu-LISA) and the European Union’s Judicial Cooperation Unit (Eurojust) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to strengthen their cooperation.
Muslims in the EU: High levels of trust despite pervasive discrimination21/09/2017 15:05:00
The vast majority of Muslims in the EU have a high sense of trust in democratic institutions despite experiencing widespread discrimination and harassment, a major survey by the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) shows.
Overcoming cross border obstacles to boost growth in EU border regions21/09/2017 13:10:00
In line with the objectives for Better Regulation and a deeper and fairer internal market, the EC is issuing a communication on "Boosting growth and cohesion in EU border regions", with a set of new concrete actions and a list of ongoing initiatives to develop further, to help EU border regions grow faster and ever closer.