DUBAI, 7th September, 2022 (WAM) — The Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MoCCAE) today launched the National Air Quality Agenda 2031, approved by the UAE Cabinet in June 2022.
The agenda provides a general framework to lead and align federal and local government entities and the private sector concerning monitoring and effectively managing air quality and reducing air pollution to contribute to a healthy and safe environment.
The launch took place during the forum MoCCAE organised to mark the International Day of Clean Air for Blue Skies under the theme “The Air We Share”, featuring multiple presentations of the outcomes of local scientific research about particulate matter composition and sources.
The event drew the participation of international organisations, including the United Nations, the Global Green Growth Institute, and the Climate and Clean Air Coalition. Among the federal and local government entities in attendance were the Ministry of Health and Prevention, the Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Centre, the National Centre of Meteorology, the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi, Dubai Municipality, Sharjah City Municipality, Abu Dhabi Public Health Centre, the Dubai Health Authority, the Environment Protection and Development Authority in Ras Al Khaimah, and Umm Al Quwain Municipality. Khalifa University, American University of Sharjah, United Arab Emirates University, and New York University Abu Dhabi represented academia at the forum.
Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri, Minister of Climate Change and the Environment, said, “Air pollution is one of the main issues affecting the wellbeing of mankind and the environment. Estimated to cause seven million premature deaths annually, it contributes to impeding global efforts to combat climate change.”
She added, “To mark the International Day of Clean Air for Blue Skies, we hosted a forum that brought together local and international stakeholders to highlight the interconnection between air pollution and public health, promote collective action to tackle the issue and spur discussions to develop practical solutions. The development of the agenda was made possible through the valuable contributions of various federal and local government stakeholders. The active participation of our institutional partners proves the paramount importance of this endeavour.”
The agenda sets out trends, initiatives, and projects that will be launched in the coming few years to address air pollution in four focus areas: outdoor air quality, indoor air quality, ambient odour and ambient noise.
To achieve its targets, the National Air Quality Agenda outlines key enablers, including establishing a clear and robust policy and institutional framework, enhancing technical and human resource capacities, promoting scientific and academic research, leveraging advanced technology, and facilitating access to financial resources.
The agenda is built upon three pillars. Monitoring refers to the actual measurement of air pollution and related parameters, while mitigation involves a broad range of existing, planned, and required actions that will be taken to reduce levels of and exposure to pollutants. Finally, management relates to measures that will allow for interventions and initiatives to be effectively implemented, tracked, and controlled to reach the overall goal of improved air quality.