Air-o-meter

The Air-o-Meter

The results displayed in the Air-o-Meter stem from the expected impact of reducing emissions of the five pollutants covered in the revision of the EU’s National Emissions Ceilings (NEC) Directive.

The Air-o-Meter uses a mix of data from the impact assessment in the European Commission’s proposal and additional data from consultants IIASA and EMRC who were contracted to do the Commission’s impact assessment.

The data is available for every EU country or for the EU as a whole, for four different policy scenarios and for each policy target year (i.e. 2020, 2025 and 2030). The results are expressed in:

We have used different examples to illustrate how large or small the results are in the Air-o-Meter.

Click here to download the full Excel table with the results used in the Air-o-Meter as well as emissions data

Click here to download the PDF for the full methodology and references behind the Air-o-Meter


FAQs

For some countries, the economic costs under the EU Parliament scenario in 2025 and 2030 are very low or even negative. Why is that?

The EU Parliament scenario is based on new climate and energy policy assumptions which would improve air quality through measures in other policy areas e.g. improved energy efficiency or more renewable energy. The costs can therefore sometimes be lower compared to the baseline scenario.


Why are some of the Commission proposal benefits at, or close to, zero?

For 2020, the European Commission decided to propose air pollution cuts that were a copy-paste exercise of the 2012 revised Gothenburg Protocol under the Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution (CLRTAP). These internationally agreed reductions are in fact lower than the baseline scenario, i.e. levels that countries will achieve anyway under existing EU and national legislation. This explains why the Commission scenario doesn’t deliver any additional benefits for 2020.


Do these scenarios take into account changes already being discussed at EU level such as removing methane emission caps?

No. The data provided only covers the different scenarios available before discussions in the Council and the Parliament started. No impact assessment of proposals to lowering the level of ambition, such as removing methane ceilings or less ammonia emission reductions has been carried out for which data is in the public domain.


Why do you only have three target years?

These are the three target years considered in the Commission’s analysis for the revised National Emissions Ceilings Directive.


Why did you only provide data for premature deaths, economic benefits and costs or ecosystems saved?

We based ourselves on the results of the European Commission’s impact assessment and related work where these were the indicators used. Of course, it would have been good to use indicators such as lost economic productivity but these were not included in the Commission’s impact assessment.


Do these scenarios take into account changes already being discussed at EU level such as removing methane emission caps?

No. The data provided only covers the different scenarios available before discussions in the Council and the Parliament started. No impact assessment of proposals to lowering the level of ambition, such as removing methane ceilings or less ammonia emission reductions has been carried out for which data is in the public domain.


Why is methane not taken into account?

Methane emission reductions were not included in this exercise, which focuses on the five other pollutants of the NEC Directive. Therefore, methane emission reductions proposed by the Commission would deliver additional health and environmental benefits which were not accounted for in the Air-o-Meter. The methane commitments proposed by the Commission are for 2030 only.


Revision of the National Emissions Ceilings Directive

To find out more about the ongoing revision of the National Emissions Ceilings Directive:


Questions?

Contact Louise Duprez, Senior Policy Officer for Air Quality at the European Environmental Bureau (EEB) or

Contact Sébastien Pant, Communications Officer for Air Quality at the European Environmental Bureau (EEB).