The air we breathe is killing us

The air we breathe is killing us

Residents demonstrating against the asphalt plants in Dhali From car emissions to polluting factories, the state is failing its people By Charalampos Theopemptou Source: https://cyprus-mail.com/2021/03/31/the-air-we-breathe-is-killing-us/ People often ask me which is the biggest environmental problem that we face. My answer is that the biggest problem is waste management, but the most pressing issue to solve, is that of the bad air quality we breathe. Proof of this is easy to find. On December 14, 2018, the Cyprus Mail published an article with the title “Living in air-polluted Nicosia will cost residents on average a year of their lives” which carried an interview with Jean Sciare, professor and director of the Energy, Environment, Water Research Centre (EEWRC) at the Cyprus Institute. The Air quality in Europe — 2020 report, published by the European Environment Agency, uses data that it receives from all EU countries. On page 108 it has this table below that indicates the estimated number of premature deaths, which in Cyprus totals more than 800 people per...
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3rd Partner’s Meeting of “Air quality services for a cleaner air in Cyprus -AQ-SERVE” Project

3rd Partner’s Meeting of “Air quality services for a cleaner air in Cyprus -AQ-SERVE” Project

On 19/01/2021 the 3rd Partner’s Meeting of “Air quality services for a cleaner air in Cyprus -AQ-SERVE” Project, took place online and remotely due to Covid-19 situation. The purpose of the3rd Partner’s meeting was: To review the status of the project and to monitor the progress of the work. The meeting assessed the fulfilment of all aspects, both scientific and managerial. To identify issues and risks, and to propose relevant address-actions and contingency planning To keep open lines of communication and foster team building  A review of operational points was presented by the Management Team and the Coordinator. Each project work-package was presented and point to be discussed where elaborated more between the partners. Launched in December 2018, the AQ-SERVE1 project will provide the first-ever risk assessment and evaluation of the health impact of air pollution in Cyprus. AQ-SERVE aims to utilize best-in-class scientific and technological resources to identify the most efficient pollution abatement measures for improving air quality in Cyprus, and enable tangible benefits for public...
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2nd AQ-SERVE Press Release (M18) RPF/INTEGRATED/0916/0016

2nd AQ-SERVE Press Release (M18) RPF/INTEGRATED/0916/0016

Title: Reduced air pollution in Nicosia during lockdown.  NICOSIA, June 2020 - Researchers of the Climate and Atmosphere Research Center (CARE-C) of the Cyprus Institute (www.cyi.ac.cy), with the contribution of the continuous monitoring of major pollutants performed by the Air Quality section of the Cyprus’ Department of Labour in the Ministry of Labour, Welfare and Social Insurance (www.airquality.gov.cy ), investigated air quality in Nicosia during lockdown. It was determined to what extent the decrease of traffic emissions has changed the concentration levels of air pollution in the urban environment.  Preliminary results show that the unprecedented lockdown measures taken in the battle against coronavirus (COVID-19) have triggered a major decrease of air pollution due to local traffic emissions in Nicosia. The researchers focused on two pollutants, carbon monoxide (CO), which is derived from the incomplete combustion of carbon-containing fuels, including those from traffic and biomass burning, and nitrogen oxides (NOx), which come almost exclusively from fossil fuel use. Data were obtained in March,...
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AQ-SERVE project on the 2nd CSP4Climate conference

AQ-SERVE project on the 2nd CSP4Climate conference

The consequences of climate crisis are of global significance and emphasize the importance of the issues discussed during the previous CSP4Climate conference. The measures needed be taken should be discussed and agreed upon internationally since the passing of the time has confirmed the urgency to address the climate crisis in parallel to the current pandemic crisis, not only for the Mediterranean but worldwide. Due to abundant available solar energy in the Mediterranean and Middle East, Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) Technologies could play a very important role in the decarbonization of the Energy Sector. The challenges of CSP and the advancements of renewable energies will be discussed in conjunction to mitigation and adaptation measures through renewable energies. Furthermore, challenges and opportunities that emerge from the European environmental and cost-effective policies and measures will be presented and debated. CSP4Climate conference intends to provide a stimulating dialog among leading Policy Makers, Scientists, and Industry Leaders from around the world, while updates and improvements on Concentrated...
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EU takes Bulgaria, Greece to Court of Justice over air pollution

EU takes Bulgaria, Greece to Court of Justice over air pollution

Photo: Court of Justice of the European Union The European Commission referred two member countries from the Balkans to the Court of Justice of the European Union for breaches in air pollution. Greece and Bulgaria don’t comply with limit values for particulate matter PM10. The EU also reprimanded them for their track record in environmental protection and also called on 13 member states and the UK to submit long-term building renovation strategies. The European Commission said it launched procedures before the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) against Bulgaria and Greece, citing excessive air pollution. The same judicial institution ruled in May against Romania over air pollution in its capital city. Of note, Bucharest and Sofia are in the group of European cities with the highest health-related social costs of air pollution. The government in Sofia failed to ensure full compliance with the court’s judgement from April 2017, which found that it had breached its obligations under the EU Directive 2008/50/EC...
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Air pollution and climate change measures should be linked

Air pollution and climate change measures should be linked

National measures to cut air pollution would benefit from stronger links with climate action, according to the European Environment Agency (EEA). In their latest briefing, the EEA presented an overview of the latest policies and measures reported by Member States to tackle air pollution, as required under the National Emission reduction Commitments (NEC) Directive.  Policies to reduce nitrogen oxides (NOX), particulate matter (PM2.5) and ammonia (NH3) mainly focus on the agriculture, transport and energy sectors.  However, the briefing shows that the Member States have identified about one-third of their air pollution policies should have links with national policies to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, which are reported under the Regulation on a mechanism for monitoring and reporting greenhouse gas emissions.  According to the Briefing, it is vital to seek coherence across climate change mitigation and air pollution.  Promoting consistency in reporting policies and measures on air pollution, energy and climate change can reduce red tape, foster policy coherence and support the identification of synergies across efforts...
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Surface air temperature for November 2020

Surface air temperature for November 2020

Globally, November 2020 was the warmest November on record, by a clear margin. For Europe, the month was the joint second warmest on record. Temperatures were most above the 1981-2010 average over a large region covering much of northern Europe, Siberia and the Arctic Ocean, while temperatures were most below average over central Asia and West Antarctica. November 2020 was warmer than the 1981-2010 average for the month over almost all of  Europe. Temperatures were considerably higher than average over the Alps and the north of the continent. Norway had its joint warmest November in a data series reaching back to 1900. Sweden and Finland also saw records broken. Conditions were close to or a little cooler than average only in parts of the south-east of the continent. Temperatures were exceptionally high for November over a large region covering much of Siberia, the Arctic Ocean and bordering coastal seas, extending into western and northern Alaska and the far north-west of Canada. Temperatures...
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German aerosol scientists say these 6 indoor air guidelines will reduce COVID-19 spread

German aerosol scientists say these 6 indoor air guidelines will reduce COVID-19 spread

Finally, experts are addressing the contagious elephant in the room: How to actually make indoor air safe in the age of the coronavirus. This week a top cohort of German scientists released surprisingly straight-forward indoor air guidelines to prevent COVID-19 spread. They are: N95 masks. “They should be mandatory in many sectors, instead of the simple hygiene masks,” write the authors.Window ventilation. The more, the better. It’s effective and cheap.Exhaust ventilation systems. The air must be extracted upwards through an overhead exhaust suction, and appropriately filtered if recirculated. The group advises that these ventilation systems be installed immediately in places like classrooms, restaurants, hospitals, buses, and trains.Air purification systems. The use of appropriate purifiers for the size and space are critical. Portable is fine.CO2 monitoring. The results are proxy for how well ventilation is working. If CO2 levels are extremely low in buildings like museums, for example, reopening could be reasonable.No fans. Ceiling fans recirculate air, likely keeping virus particles in the air for...
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Inside the innovative eco-school designed to remove air pollution

Inside the innovative eco-school designed to remove air pollution

Source: https://www.euronews.com/living/2020/09/02/inside-the-innovative-eco-school-designed-to-remove-air-pollution  By Doloresz Katanich  02/09/2020  Forest School in Pune   -   Copyright  Nudes - Nuru Karim  This 'Forest School' design was the winning entry for a competition held to create a new educational facility in Pune, a city in western India. The design comes from architecture studio Nudes who specialise in blending social, cultural and environmental aspects in a building. The city of Pune has witnessed dramatic urban growth as well as worsening air quality in the last decade. The level of pollutants regularly exceeds both Indian standards and World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines. The design of the 'Forest School' tackles this problem. The vertical garden serves to purify the air from pollutants and chemicals and turn carbon dioxide into oxygen. The healthy school environment is topped off by a rooftop “infinity” cycling track. The school will teach children from an early age, providing hands-on learning about the environment and climate change. ...
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European cities race to clean the air

European cities race to clean the air

Source: https://www.euronews.com/2020/08/31/european-cities-race-to-clean-the-air  By Copernicus    31/08/2020  London view from St Paul's Cathedral   Copyright  Getty Images Mounting concerns about public health are pushing cities to scrub their air clean. But just how easy is breathing fresh air again? Italy’s economic powerhouse hadn’t felt so clean in years. As the novel coronavirus put the country and the hard-hit region of Lombardia under lockdown, muting the human and economic buzz, it also unlocked an unlikely reality: cities with better quality. Above the Earth, satellites confirmed the slash in air pollutants, as they took snapshots of the region’s clearer skies, including Milan’s, infamous for its dangerous air pollution levels, just as many other places in the world. This March, nitrous oxide was down 38%, particulate matter 14%, and benzene 33% lower, compared to the same month between 2016-2019, data from Lombardia’s environment agency showed. Madrid, Lisbon, and other cities in Europe also breathed fresher air through their lockdowns. But this silver lining to the global health emergency turns to be short-lived as...
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