Climate change mitigation is essential but expensive. However, the associated reduction in air pollution could provide substantial benefits, including economic savings.
To make informed decisions, policymakers need quantitative information on the size of these potential co-benefits and their contribution to other goals of sustainable development.
This study, part of the EU Climate Cost1 Project, assessed the impacts on air pollution of international climate change policies consistent with meeting the EU target of limiting the rise in average global temperature from pre-industrial levels to 2°C.
This was done by linking two well established models: Greenhouse Gas and Air pollution Interactions and Synergies (GAINS)2, that models impacts and costs of strategies on a range of air pollutants, and the Prospective Outlook for the Long term Energy System (POLES)3, that simulates global energy activities.
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The European Commission proposed a New General Union Environment Action Program (7th EAP) in November 2012 to guide the EU Environment Policy up to 2020.
Entitled “Living Well, Within the Limits of Our Planet“, the proposal sets out a clear vision of where Europe should be in the long term; in particular, it aims to enhance Europe’s ecological resilience and transform the European Union into an inclusive and sustainable green economy.
The EAP has the three-fold aim of achieving an inclusive green economy, whilst protecting the natural capital and the health of European citizens.
Specifically, protecting natural capital, encouraging more resource efficiency and accelerating the transition to the low-carbon economy are key features of the Program, which also seeks to tackle environmental causes of disease.
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According to a recent report of the European Commission, investment in SMEs working in the area of environmentally innovative technologies is producing above-average returns, while all creating valuable jobs and also alleviating relevant environmental impacts.
The performance of young SMEs funded in 2011-2012 under the Eco-Innovation component of the EU’s Competitiveness and Innovation Programme (CIP) have shown very impressive results.
The new report, “Analysing and Reporting the Results Achieved by the CIP Eco-Innovation Market Replication Projects”, has been commissioned by the Executive Agency for Competitiveness and Innovation (EACI) on behalf of EU DG Environment and undertaken by ICF GHK.
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