EC calls on Romania, other EU states to reduce emissions of several air pollutants
The European Commission (EC) called on 14 EU Member States, including Romania, to respect their reduction commitments for several air pollutants as required by Directive 2016/2284 on the reduction of national emissions of certain atmospheric pollutants (the 'National Emission Ceilings' or 'NEC Directive').
The EC explained that this Directive sets national emission reduction commitments for several pollutants to be attained by each Member State each year between 2020 and 2029 and more ambitious reductions for 2030 onwards. Member States must establish national air pollution control programmes (NAPCPs) to show how these reduction commitments will be met.
The 14 Member States are Bulgaria, Denmark, Ireland, Spain, Cyprus, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Hungary, Austria, Poland, Portugal, Romania, and Sweden.
"The European Green Deal, with its zero pollution ambition, puts emphasis on cutting air pollution, which is among the key factors negatively affecting human health," the EC said.
The Commission explained that it analysed the national emission inventories of several pollutants submitted by Member States in 2022 (reflecting emissions from 2020) and found that the 14 countries still need to meet their commitments for one or several pollutants targeted by the NEC Directive.
"Moreover, since the measures set out in the NAPCP of most of these Member States have not ensured reaching the emission reduction commitment for one or several pollutants, these measures are not sufficient to limit the annual human-caused emissions as required by the Directive. Ammonia (stemming from the agricultural sector) is the pollutant for which most of these Member States do not comply with their obligations," the same source said.
Thus, the European Commission sent letters of formal notice to the 14 Member States, which now have two months to respond and address the shortcomings raised by the European body. In the absence of a satisfactory response, the Commission may decide to issue a reasoned opinion.
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