Eco-innovation for air quality
Clean air is essential for healthy living. Much progress has been made over the past decades to reduce air pollution across Europe, but more needs to be done as poor air quality remains the number one environmental cause of premature deaths in the European Union; and the economic costs of air pollution amount to well over €20 billion a year.
The European Commission is committed to addressing air quality and reducing air pollution to levels that do not pose risks to human health and the environment. However, tackling air pollution is a complex and systemic challenge that requires concerted action across societal actors and economic sectors.
Efforts undertaken by governments, cities and businesses to implement the Ambient Air Quality Directives can still be greatly boosted by the use of new innovative solutions like advanced technologies for household heating, implementation of strategic urban mobility plans, or pioneering ways to reduce pollution from farming practices.
To support this we need to continue to stimulate eco-innovation in this area so that more accessible, applicable and cost effective products, services and models are created, tested and widely deployed in European countries.
The 21st European Forum on Eco-innovation was held in Sofia, Bulgaria, on 5-6 February 2018. The Forum examined eco-innovative solutions for improving air quality. It brought together companies and public authorities that have already succeeded in developing and deploying effective new technologies, or innovative business and governance models, with those who are looking for such solutions and practices.
In particular, air pollution originating from energy use, transport and agriculture was addressed. The issue of how to secure financing for eco-innovative solutions was also discussed.
This event was jointly organised by the European Commission’s Directorate General for Environment and the Ministry of Environment and Water of the Republic of Bulgaria.