While, at the start of 2018, the European Commission threatened legal action against nine countries that were failing to comply with air pollution standards (1), green urbanism can solve this problem. It’s an economical and sustainable solution that would reduce air pollution while improving people’s daily lives. Let us explain!
Urban pollution and its harmful effects
Air pollution affects the health of the population, and can provoke breathing difficulties, sore throats, asthma, chronic coughs, etc. But the consequences can be even more serious: at the end of 2017, the European Environment Agency (EEA) estimated that air pollution had caused more than 500,000 deaths in 2014 (2).
Green urbanism, an effective solution
The presence of plants in urban areas has a lasting effect against atmospheric pollution: according to The Nature Conservancy, a maximum street treeplanting can provoke an annual reduce of 7.0 million to 35 million tons CO2 (3)! Green urban planning, which must be 100% worldwide in 2050 according to the objective set by the Paris agreement, can thus improve the well-being of inhabitants, while allowing authorities to save on health-related expenses.
By investing just $4.04 per capita in tree planting, cities could significantly reduce air pollution and save between 11,000 and 37,000 lives a year (4)!
Cleaner air for healthier people and a better quality of life, that’s possible! Want the latest news about green urbanism and emerging initiatives? Go to the green city section of our blog!
(1) The Brussel Times, Commission gives nine countries their “last chance”
(2) New Scientist, Air pollution blamed for 500,000 early deaths in Europe in 2014
(3) The Nature Conservancy, Planting Healthy Air
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