Air quality strategy

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  • This study to develop AQ pollutant datasets for each of the constituent countries of the UK has been commissioned by Defra in order to better inform energy and environmental policy-makers within the Devolved Administrations in their pursuit of objectives set by the Air Quality Strategy for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland (AQS for ESWNI). These objectives also contribute to the UK’s targets as a whole in terms of meeting both national and international targets on both local and transboundary air pollution....

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  • The UK Government and devolved administrations are committed to delivering clean air for a good quality of life. We have come a long way since the smogs of the 1950s. We have achieved cleaner air through regulating emissions from industrial processes, progressively tightening emissions and fuel standards for road vehicles and controlling smoke from domestic premises. But there are still sometimes levels of pollution that can significantly harm human health and the environment.

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  • Problems of indoor air quality are recognized as important risk factors for hu- man health in both low- and middle- and high-income countries. Indoor air is also important because people spend a substantial proportion of their time in buildings. In residences, day-care centres, retirement homes and other special environments, indoor air pollution affects population groups that are particu- larly vulnerable owing to their health status or age.

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  • Public transport. As an air quality strategy, a primary goal of a public transport intervention involves the targeting of service improvements and enhancements in corridors and for socio-economic groups that would otherwise be expected to adopt widespread car use. Since these groups tend to be more price- than time-sensitive, service enhancements are more effective than fare restraint or fare subsidies. For many jurisdictions, this strategy may conflict with another fundamental goal of public transport policy: providing low-cost transport services to the poor.

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  • China is rapidly developing as evidenced by enhanced urbanization and industrialization and greatly increased energy consumption. However, these have brought Chinese cities a variety of urban air pollution problems in recent decades. During the 1970s, black smoke from stacks became the characteristic of Chinese industrial cities; in the 1980s, many southern cities began to suffer serious acid rain pollution; and recently, the air quality in large cities has deteriorated due to nitrous oxides (NOx), carbon monoxide (CO), and photochemical smog, which are typical of vehicle pollution.

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  • WHO has a long tradition in synthesizing the evidence on health aspects of air quality and in preparing air quality guidelines defining conditions for healthy air. We are grateful to the outstanding scientists conducting this work. We hope that these new guidelines will be useful globally to people assessing indoor air quality with a view to predicting its effects on health, and also to those with responsibil- ity for introducing measures to reduce health risks from indoor exposure to air pollutants.

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  • The major sources of indoor air pollution worldwide include indoor combustion of solid fuels, tobacco smoking, outdoor air pollutants, emissions from construction materials and furnishings, and improper maintenance of ventilation and air conditioning systems. Although some indoor air pollutants, such as environmental tobacco smoke, are of concern globally, profiles of indoor air pollutants and the resulting health risks are generally very different in developed and developing countries.

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  • Despite the flurry of media and political attention to air quality-induced illnesses and deaths, the question still remains as to what will be the future air quality in Ontario and what are the health consequences. Are more aggressive measures required to reduce the risk of poor air quality for human health? What benefits would be realized now and in the future from improved air quality? These are examples of pertinent environmental policy questions for which sound answers are needed. This need has been recognized for many years by the OMA.

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  • The available data does, however, suggest that present PM10 values exceed the recommended limit values in the majority of Member States. In future projections, planned actions should be taken into consideration. These include the SOx and NOx Protocols within UNECE and the Auto-Oil programme. Abatement policies for other pollutants will also have an impact.

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  • The first programmatic goal of the project is to provide additional and more comprehensive information than is currently available to explain the nature and causes of particulate concentrations and visibility impairment in and around Mexico City. This information is needed to better understand the implications of currently planned emission reduction strategies, and to focus future emissions reduction efforts in those areas where they will have the greatest benefit on air quality for the least cost.

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  • Critical loads, and other approaches that use models or empirical observations to link deposition with effects, provide tools that enable resource managers and policymakers to evaluate tradeoffs between the costs of more stringent emissions controls and the benefits of ecosystem services provided by healthy ecosystems. A critical loads approach can be used to synthesize scientific knowledge about air pollution thresholds that cause adverse impacts or ecosystem change.

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  • It was the English poet W. H Auden who said many have lived without love, none without water: A sentiment that underlines the half way point of the new decade for action under the simple but poignant theme ‘Water is Life’. The challenge of water in the 21st century is one of both quantity and quality. This publication is about the quality dimension of that equation, highlighting the links between clean water and public health and the health of the wider environment. The fact is that, often as a result of mismanagement, much of the water that is available in developing but...

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  • Mercury can exist in many different chemical and physical forms in the environment (see Box 2). Those different forms are called “species.” In this document, we will use the general term “mercury” to refer to all forms of the element, while “methylmercury” will be used to distinguish organometallic mercury compounds (essentially those that contain carbon) from inorganic forms of mercury. Pure mercury is known as elemental mercury or metallic mercury.

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  • Sustainable urban development requires an integrated approach and the Thematic Strategy advocates that national and regional authorities support municipalities in achieving more integrated management at the local level. This approach is supported by both of the Council and the European Parliament5. Integrated approaches include long-term strategic visions and link different policies at different administrative levels to ensure coherency.

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  • Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC), the largest city of Vietnam and the seventh city with the highest density of inhabitants in the world (3,300 persons by kilometer square) (HCMC Urban Drainage Company, 1998), is one of the cities in the world which are seriously influenced by pollution. The main sources of atmospheric pollution are vehicles (motorbikes), the industry and population.

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