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Air pollution is one of the main issues at the local and global levels. According to the United Nations, air pollution is the single greatest environmental threat to health in the world. Every year, 6.5 million people die from exposure to indoor and outdoor air pollution, and 9 out of 10 people breathe contaminated outdoor air that exceeds the acceptable levels set by the World Health Organization guidelines. The effects of air pollution are not limited to health only, but extend to other economic and social aspects.

 

In the UAE, air quality is one of the key issues in the UAE National Vision 2021 agenda. The agenda aims to raise air quality from its current level to 90% by 2021. To meet this goal, the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment is working with its partners in the public and private sectors to bolster national efforts through various means, such as the use of state-of-the-art systems and techniques and the adoption of best practices. These include developing and enhancing the national standards for air pollution and compliance control, the transition to a green economy, and increasing the use of clean energy in different fields, the sustainability of the transport sector, the development of an air quality control network and the reliance on intelligent technologies and solutions in monitoring types of pollutants.

Bulletins / Guides

Terminology

A

Agenda 21

Programme of action on sustainable development adopted at the UN Conference on Environment and Development in 1992, often referred to as the “Blueprint for Sustainable Development”.
Agenda 21 has 40 chapters dealing with all aspects of sustainable development including social and economic dimensions (combating poverty and promoting human health), conservation and resource management, major groups (e.g. women, indigenous people, business and unions) and means of implementation (e.g. financial resources, transfer of technology, public awareness and education).
B

Best available technique

Most effective and advanced technique, the environmental impacts of
which are limited.

Best environmental practice

The application of the most appropriate combination of environmental
control measures and strategies.
S

Sustainability

A dynamic process that guarantees the persistence of natural and human systems in an equitable manner. Sustainable development (SD): Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (WCED, 1987)