The Effectiveness of European Union Environmental Policy

By Wyn Grant; Peter Newell et al. | Go to book overview

7
Air Pollution

Introduction

The traditional emphasis of air pollution policy was on 'stationary' sources of air pollution: either on large industrial plants which poured out smoke and substances harmful to health, or on the effects of coal fires in domestic households which produced 'smogs' in cities such as London which seriously impaired movement and led to significant numbers of additional deaths through respiratory diseases. The number of industrial plants has declined throughout Europe, and those that remain use more efficient methods for reducing pollution. Domestic legislation created 'smokeless zones' and, in any case, the spread of central heating and other new forms of space heating reduced the domestic use of coal. Although some stationary source problems remain, the focus of the debate about air quality management in recent years has been on pollution from 'mobile sources' — such as cars and trucks — and the consequent hazards to human health. For example, in London traffic contributes 97 per cent of carbon monoxide emissions, 77 per cent of particulate matter and 75 per cent of nitrogen oxides ( Air Quality Management, March 1998, p. 1). This chapter will focus on mobile source problems which have been the principal policy concern of the EU in the late 1990s.

This is an area which faces particularly difficult problems of policy formulation and implementation. One cannot easily satisfy the fourth criterion of effectiveness, that of changing the behaviour of relevant actors. The pollution is largely caused by a very

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The Effectiveness of European Union Environmental Policy
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • The Effectiveness of European Union Environmental Policy *
  • Contents v
  • Preface ix
  • Introduction 1
  • 1: Making Environmental Policy 7
  • 2: Business and Environmental Interests 43
  • 3: Implementation and Enforcement 66
  • 4: The Eu as an External Actor 89
  • 5: The Climate Change Policy of the European Union 120
  • 6: Water Policy 152
  • 7: Air Pollution 177
  • Conclusion 199
  • Bibliography 211
  • Index 231
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