Air Pollution - ICIMOD

Air Pollution - ICIMOD

Policies to address air pollution at local, national, regional & global levels Regional Media Training Workshop: Air pollution, its sources and impact...

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Policies to address air pollution at local, national, regional & global levels Regional Media Training Workshop: Air pollution, its sources and impacts, and mitigation options

Bhushan Tuladhar Regional Technical Advisor for South Asia UN-Habitat 20 November 2015

Model for Pollution Management Human activity producing pollutants

Release of pollutants into the environment

Long term impact of pollutant on ecosystem


Altering human activity through education, incentives and penalties to promote: • Development of alternative technologies • Adoption of alternative lifestyles • Reducing, reusing and recycling

Regulating and reducing pollutants at the Regulate point of emission by: • Setting and imposing standards • Introducing measures for extracting pollutants from waste emissions Cleaning up the pollutant and restoring ecosystems by: Restore • Extracting and removing pollutants from the ecosystem • Replanting and restocking with animal population

Examples of air pollution control options • Reduce o




Promote walking, bicycling and use of public transportation Use alternative fuels such as electric vehicles Use cleaner fossil fuel with less sulphur Promote cleaner vehicles

• Regulate o

Mandate the use of Catalytic Converters in vehicles

• Restore o

Ban the use of cars during days with high pollution

Avoid-Shift-Improve Strategy for Sustainable transport

Source: GIZ

Vehicle Emission Control

Clean Vehicle Technology

Clean Fuel

Transport Management

Inspection & Maintenance


How do we implement these options? • • • •

Policies Regulations Standards Incentives o o

• • • • •

Financial reward Recognition

Education & awareness Research & development Technology transfer Plans & programmes Monitoring & evaluation

Policies • “basic principles by which a government is guided” • “A statement of intent, and is implemented as a procedure or protocol” • “a set of ideas or plan of what to do in a particular situation that has been agreed to officially by a group of people, business organization or government ” Cambridge Dictionary

“Our Ultimate Destination is to see Pakistan among the 10 largest economies of the world by 2047 – the centennial year of our independence” 8 Elements: People First, Inclusive growth, Governance, Water-Energy-Food, Private Sector, Knowledge economy, Regional Connectivity

Standards • Ambient air quality • Emission Standards o o

Vehicle emission – new / in-use Industrial emission

• Infrastructure o

Road standards

• Equipment or technology o

Public transport vehicles

• Quality or type of materials/chemicals used o

Fuel quality standards

Air Quality Policies in Asia 1.

Only Myanmar without national ambient air quality standards. These are currently being developed with assistance from ADB


Increased availability of air quality monitoring data but variability in reporting mechanisms


Communicating health implications of monitoring results is implemented is only few countries and is less stringent


Several cities have Clean Air Plans, although level of implementation is unclear; increased interest in emergency response and alert systems


Active discussions exists in strengthening vehicle emission, fuel efficiency and economy standards. Technological standards also needs to be linked with air quality standards to maximize benefits.


Concerted and contributory efforts at global level

Air quality standards in Asia NOTES: China: Grade I = applies to specially protected areas, such as natural conservation areas, scenic spots, and historical sites; China: Grade II = applies to residential areas, mixed commercial/residential areas, cultural, industrial, and rural areas; HK* = Proposed air quality objectives for Hong Kong SAR India** = NAAQS for Industrial, Residential, Rural and Other Areas India*** = NAAQS for Ecologically Sensitive Areas China* = Revised standards GB 3095

Source: Clean Air Asia, 2013

Most Asian countries with ambient AQ standards except for Afghanistan and Myanmar (as of August 2012). Several countries still do not have standards for PM2.5.

Emission Standards for New Light-Duty Vehicles

Sulphur level in diesel

Reporting air quality information Social media and mobile technology


Air Quality Index (AQI) • A number used by government agencies to communicate to the public how polluted the air is • Calculated based on concentration of several pollutants over a specified period o

Many countries monitor particulates, ground-level ozone, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide and carbon monoxide and calculate air quality indices for these pollutants


Air Pollution Level Excellent




Lightly Polluted

Slight irritations may occur, individuals with breathing or heart problems should reduce outdoor exercise.


Moderately Polluted

Slight irritations may occur, individuals with breathing or heart problems should reduce outdoor exercise.

Heavily Polluted

Healthy people will be noticeably affected. People with breathing or heart problems will experience reduced endurance in activities. These individuals and elders should remain indoors and restrict activities.

Severely Polluted

Healthy people will experience reduced endurance in activities. There may be strong irritations and symptoms and may trigger other illnesses. Elders and the sick should remain indoors and avoid exercise. Healthy individuals should avoid out door activities.

China’s AQI



Health Implications No health implications. Few hypersensitive individuals should reduce outdoor exercise.

Differences in AQIs can be confusing

Policies at various levels • Local o


Local Adaptation Plans of Action (LAPAs) City development plans / strategies

• National o o o o

National Climate Change Policies Fiscal policies Sectoral policies related to energy, transport, etc. National Plan or Vision Document

• Regional o o

Declarations of regional conferences such as SAARC Agreement among groups of countries, e.g. BRICS, LDCs, etc.

• Global o o

UNFCCC – Kyoto Protocol, INDCs SDGs

Climate change plans in Asian cities • Based on 2012 survey of nearly 900 cities– Only 3% of Asian cities have a plan to tackle the challenge of climate change • Of the 29 cities with climate change plans, only five are capital cities: Bangkok, Delhi, Seoul, Singapore and Tokyo. • Most plans were developed by cities in India, China and Vietnam Source: Clean Air Asia, 2014

SDGs related to transportation • Target 3.9: Substantially reduce the number of deaths and illnesses from hazardous chemicals and air, water and soil pollution and contamination • Target 11.2: Provide access to safe, affordable, accessible and sustainable transport systems for all, improving road safety, notably by expanding public transport, with special attention to the needs of those in vulnerable situations, women, children, persons with disabilities and older persons • Target 12c: Rationalize inefficient fossil-fuel subsidies that encourage wasteful consumption by removing market distortions,…

UNFCCC & COP 21 • 1992: UNFCCC is signed by 155 nations at Rio, which calls for “stabilization of atmospheric concentrations of GHGs at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.” • 1997: More than 160 nations adopt the Kyoto Protocol, with legally binding obligations to limit emissions of industrialized nations for the years 2008–2012 and measures such as CDM to assist developed countries in meeting their targets • 2015: COP 21 expected to achieve a binding and universal agreement post 2020

Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) • Unconditional actions national governments intend to take under the future UNFCCC climate deal, due to be agreed in Paris in December 2015. INDCs are, therefore, the basis of post-2020 global emissions reduction commitments that would be included in the future climate agreement • As of 18 Nov, 37 submissions, reflecting 164 countries (including the European Union member states), and covering around 91% of global emissions in 2010 (excluding LULUCF) and 92% of global population • According to Climate Action Tracker, if all INDCs are implemented, they would bring global warming down to 2.7C - still above 2C & 1.5 C Source:

Impact of INDCs


Examples of INDCs submitted • India: reduce emissions intensity by 33 to 35 % by 2030 from 2005 level; 40 % cumulative electric power installed capacity from non-fossil fuel based energy resources by 2030; create additional carbon sink of 2.5 to 3 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent through additional forest and tree cover by 2030 • China : reduce carbon intensity by 60% to 65% by 2030 below 2005 levels, increase the share of nonfossil primary energy to 20%, increase the forest stock and peak by 2030 or earlier. • USA: reduce economy wide emissions by 26% to 28% below 2005 domestically • EU: reduce greenhouse gases emissions by at least 40% below 1990 by 2030. Source:

Implementation of Policies • Policies in isolation do not work. It needs to be followed up with plans, programmes and investments Policies





• 60% of population in Barcelona is within 600 m from a subway line (99 km of lines & 136 stations)

• To provide same accessibility , Atlanta would have to build 3400 km of metro line and 2800 new stations

India’s National Urban Transport Policy Vision: • To recognize that people occupy center-stage in our cities and all plans would be for their common benefit and well being • To make our cities the most livable in the world and enable them to become the “engines of economic growth” that power India’s development in the 21st century • To allow our cities to evolve into an urban form that is best suited for the unique geography of their locations and is best placed to support the main social and economic activities that take place in the city.

New Delhi which has built 66 Flyovers and planning for more and gated communities

• Higher travel distances & increased dependency in cars • Higher pollution and CO2 emission • Impeded access to public transport nodes

“Trying to solve traffic jams building more road infrastructure is like trying to put out a fire with gasoline” Enrique Penalosa, Former Mayor of Bogata

Traffic Congestion

A street is more than just a transport facility, it is a PUBLIC SPACE

"The potential for a lively city is strengthened when more people are invited to walk, bike and stay in city spaces" - Jan Gehl, 2010: Cities for People

Monthly Average PM10 in Kathmandu Valley

“A city is more civilized not when it has more highways but when a child on a tricycle is able to move about everywhere with ease & safety – A city for people” - Enrique Penalosa