Department for Environment, Food and Rural Services
This Clean Air Strategy shows how we will tackle all sources of air pollution, making our air healthier to breathe, protecting nature and boosting the economy.
Clean air is essential for life, health, the environment and the economy. Government must act to tackle air pollution which shortens lives. We have already acted to reduce concentrations of
nitrogen dioxide (NO2) around roads from cars. But vehicles are not the only source of harmful
emissions. Air pollution is a result of the way we currently generate power, heat our homes,
produce food, manufacture consumer goods and power transport. Better, cleaner technologies
and simple changes in behaviour will tackle the pollution that claims lives.
In the past, the priority was to tackle the biggest individual sources of pollution. As these major
sources of emissions have decreased, the relative contribution of smaller and more diffuse sources of air pollution, like smaller industrial sites, product use, open fires in homes and spreading manure on farms, has increased. That requires new action.
We have already adopted ambitious, legally-binding international targets to reduce emissions of five of the most damaging air pollutants (fine particulate matter, ammonia, nitrogen oxides, sulphur dioxide, non-methane volatile organic compounds) by 2020 and 2030.
We are now also proposing tough new goals to cut public exposure to particulate matter
pollution, as recommended by the World Health Organization.