Critical Areas for Compliance with PM10 and NO2 Limit Values in Europe
The Directive on ambient air quality and cleaner air for Europe (2008/50/EC) requires compliance with limit values inter alia for PM10 and nitrogen dioxide (NO2), to be achieved by Member States by 2005 and 2010, respectively. Member States have been allowed to postpone compliance with these limit values until 2011 and 2015, respectively, under certain conditions.
Within Europe there are several regions where compliance with these limit values is expected to be very difficult even after the postponement period.
In this study criteria for the identification of such critical areas have been developed, and the respective areas are described.
A subset of these areas has been selected and analysed in more detail. Critical factors that hamper compliance in these selected areas have been identified. These include adverse dispersion conditions, sheer size of agglomerations, emission densities from traffic, industry, domestic heating, and deficiencies in air quality assessment and management.
For the selected areas air quality management approaches have been analysed and suggestions for suitable courses of action are made, based on these findings.
KeywordsAir quality Air quality directive Air quality limit value NO2 PM10
This study has been financed by the European Commission under framework contract ENV.C.3/FRA/2009/0008. The opinions expressed are those of the authors only and do not represent the Commission’s official position
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