New air quality rules for the EU

Though air pollution overall is decreasing, it still poses a great threat globally (/stock)

Natalia Welzenbach-Marcu | January 15th, 2019

The European Union has recently released a new set of guidelines that aim to reduce air pollution. The goal, overall, is to improve air quality globally until it reaches the standards set by the World Health Organization. According to WHO, over 80% of the world’s urban population live with air quality that falls miserably short of these clean air standards.

Beginning in 2022, farmers’ use of fertilizer will be restricted, and certain types of stoves and vehicles will be more heavily regulated. The move comes during a wave of new studies emphasizing the dangers of air pollution; it’s been linked to dementia, early miscarriage, and heart conditions. An estimated 7 million people globally die of pollution-related causes every year.

Despite these new and stricter regulations, the UK may be exempt from the EU’s air pollution guidelines after Brexit. Many UK citizens are concerned with air pollution, however, as it is the fourth largest threat to public health. If the EU guidelines end up un-enforceable, citizens of the UK will have to press their representatives for different rules.

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