Health groups call on the leaders of the Western Balkan countries to harmonize national air quality standards with the World Health Organization Global air quality guidelines. Health experts should be actively involved in these decision-making processes to ensure the timely integration of public health measures into environmental policies. Compliance with WHO recommendations brings multiple benefits – reduced incidence of chronic diseases and premature deaths, reduced overall health costs and, most importantly, better health and higher productivity of people.
“With today’s report on air quality, Parliamentarians show they are ready to act on the urgent call from people across Europe and the scientific community. The next step is for the European Commission to propose a full alignment of EU air quality standards with WHO guidelines and the latest science. Disease prevention cannot wait: we need all decision-makers on board, especially national governments, to swiftly reduce pollution everywhere and protect every single person, especially those most vulnerable.”
Sophie Perroud, Policy Coordinator at the Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL)