ANALYSING AIR POLLUTION AND ITS MANAGEMENT THROUGH THE LENS OF THE UN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS: A REVIEW AND ASSESSMENT
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JAMES LONGHURST, JO BARNES, TIM CHATTERTON, LAURA DE VITO, MARK EVERARD, ENDA HAYES, EMILY PRESTWOOD, BEN WILLIAMS
This paper provides a high-level assessment of the causes and impacts of air pollution and its management through the lens of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Through a literature review and expert assessment process the impact of air pollution as a barrier to achieving the SDGs is considered. The enabling contribution of air quality management is also assessed. The assessment considers the individual goal level as well as providing a synoptic overview of the 17 interconnected goals. The issues of air quality, air pollution and its management are not clearly identified in any of the 17 headline goals but to varying degrees are directly or indirectly present in some of the underpinning targets or indicators within the SDG framework. Air pollution is identified in this assessment as a direct barrier for each of the individual goals whilst air quality management is assessed as an enabler for 8 goals and provides co-benefits for the other 9. The importance of addressing air pollution as a negative constraint on sustainable progress is of fundamental importance, but the positive enabling contributions of clean air to the meeting of SDGs must also be recognised.
air pollution, air quality management, sustainable development goals