Webinar – Local solutions for healthier cities: Improving air quality

17 March 2020

On 10 March 2020, as part of our work in the Covenant of Mayors and in the IUC (Internal Urban Cooperation Unit), Eurocities organised the webinar ‘Solutions to improve urban air quality’ featuring examples of local measures in Europe and abroad

The webinar began with a presentation of the Joint Research Center’s Urban Atlas 2.5 and an overview of the most common sources of air pollution for European cities, and of the SHERPA Air Quality integrated tool, which helps to measure of air quality improvements resulting from national/regional/local emission reduction measures.

City of Grenoble Alpes Metropole presented its crosscutting approach to addressing air pollution. The French city, which aims to reach carbon neutrality by 2050, has set out a mobility masterplan as part of their energy transition & air quality plan to reduce emissions. Besides encouraging the use of less polluting vehicles and limiting cars’ access in cities, they have implemented a series of efforts to involve citizens and promote behavioural change.

The city of Surat, India, is currently developing an ambitious Clean Air Action Plan, and provided participants with an overview of the most emitting sectors and of the process to design targeted actions, especially concerning emissions from the waste sector and the high PM10 annual average concentrations and associated health risks.

Finally, the metropolitan government of Seoul, South Korea, discussed its approach to reduce PM 2.5 and fine dust concentrations. The city has not only designed measures to reduce PM 2.5 at the source, but has also developed a set of emergency measures for seasonal fine dust control. This scheme was put in place as the outcome of discussions between the ministry of environment, experts, and a 1,000 citizens debate.

The main takeaways of the webinars were: the importance of adopting a crosscutting approach among the different policy areas; cooperation of stakeholders, citizens, organisations, and businesses working together as a main success factor especially to roll out emergency strategies; and the importance of involving other levels of governance to address cross boundary air pollution that is felt in urban areas.

More information:

Link to the recording: