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All major air pollutants have an impact on the climate and most share common sources with greenhouse gases (GHGs). They are inextricably linked. For example, GHGs, such as methane, contribute to the formation of ground-level-ozone, and levels of ground-level ozone increase with rising temperatures. Rising temperatures increase the frequency of wildfires, which in turn further elevate levels of particulate air pollution. Therefore, actions to reduce gases like methane, greatly benefit efforts to prevent climate change, protect human health, and even boosts crop yields.
In 2018, the Air Pollution in Asia and the Pacific: Science-based Solutions Report (UNEP and CCAC, 2018) identified 25 policy and technology clean air measures which could provide numerous benefits for public health, agriculture, and the climate. These measures are also important as, when implemented, they move countries into economic recovery deliver immediate economic goals, such as job creation, improved public health, and increased food security, and contribute to achieving climate and sustainable development goals.
A recent follow-up analysis for the ASEAN region reinforces these messages, which found that measures focusing on solid waste management, vehicle inspection and maintenance, and post combustion control, among others, bring further potential for clean air and for climate action in Southeast Asia.
For these benefits to be realised, they need to be prioritised and reflected in countries’ national plans and climate change commitments through the Nationally Determined Contributions, NDCs. Many countries have started to recognize the potential to amplify the benefits of national actions by advocating an integrated approach for clean air and climate. For example, Mongolia’s revised NDC, which commits to reducing 22.7 per cent greenhouse gas emissions in 2030.
This session will demonstrate the potential benefits of implementing integrated actions for clean air and climate. It will feature preliminary results of the 2021 update to the Regional Assessment with focus on clean air measures for South-East Asia, and discuss opportunities to advance these policies in the region.
Introduction by master of ceremony and moderator
Preliminary results of the Regional Assessment with focus on clean air measures for South-East Asia and overview of undertaking an integrated approach for climate and clean air
Panel discussion: “Voices from the region”