Air quality in metropolitan areas compatible with the recommendations of the World Health Organization
Air pollution is one of the central issues when dealing with the quality of life in big cities. Originating from multiple sources, air pollutants come from the incomplete burning of fossil fuels, not only in vehicles, but also power generation, industry, wildfires, specific industrial processes, mining, etc.
Their impacts, which have well-defined geographical boundaries, extrapolate environmental degradation and exacerbate social, economic and public health problems, since they affect vulnerable populations by causing and/or aggravating cardiopulmonary diseases, causing increased morbidity and mortality rates, impacting health system costs by reducing the workforce, to mention just a few. Its damage to ecosystems is also considerable.
To address this problem, we must resort to all measures, such as adopting increasingly restrictive pollutant emission limits, reducing the number of sources, and incorporating technologies to treat such emissions, as well as better performance in the enforcement of planning and control instruments, including environmental licensing and monitoring. All are elements that lead to compliance with safer air quality standards for safeguarding human health.
The IEMA believes that civil society organizations should expand its activity on this issue on multiple fronts, and at the interface with various actors, ranging from participating in the formulation of regulations and national and state standards to technical strengthening of the development and implementation of air quality management tools, particularly in demanding solid performance from environmental agencies.
Therefore, with the aim of working towards the goal that the air quality in the large Brazilian urban centers meets the standards recommended by the World Health Organization, our main leverage is the development of studies such as emission inventories and diagnostics of monitoring networks, participation in regulatory formulation processes, supporting policies related to urban mobility that lead to the reduction of emissions from vehicles and, above all, providing tools that guarantee society’s right to information on air quality in the nation.