• English

03/22/18

UNECE showcases experiences of tackling air pollution at Clean Air Week in Bangkok

Air pollution is by far the world’s largest single environmental health risk and cause of death by cancer, affecting populations in all regions of the globe.

In Asia, air pollution is responsible for significant health impacts. As efforts increase to tackle this challenge, there is growing interest from Asian countries in UNECE’s Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution (Air Convention). Since its adoption almost 40 years ago, the Convention has helped 51 countries in Europe and North America to achieve significant reductions in a range of harmful substances.

In this context, UNECE has been sharing its experience gained under the Air Convention during “Clean Air Week” in Bangkok, held from 19 to 23 March 2018. Building on the momentum of the response from Asian countries to implement the resolution on air pollution taken at the Third UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-3) in December 2017, participants discussed progress made towards reducing pollution in the region, the latest scientific insights and information on impacts, and policy, finance and technological solutions. They also shared views on their contributions to implement the UNEA-3 resolution.

Participating in a conference and multiple meetings, UNECE showcased the Convention as a framework to tackle air pollution in the UNECE region, which could be a model for and replicated in other regions. In this regard, Parties to the Convention are currently discussing further cooperation with other regions to adapt Convention tools and methodologies to different geographic scopes. At the policy level, Parties are also discussing ideas to contribute to the development of a platform for cooperation and information-sharing, which is mentioned in the UNEA-3 resolution.

After the first Clean Air Week in 2015, the 2018 edition, organized by UN Environment, gathered more than 150 participants from Governments, the private sector, civil society, regional networks, academia, and financial institutions from across the region.