Central America - Achieving air quality, climate, and health goals

Rationale

The Central American Integration System (SICA) is the main institutional framework for regional integration in Central America. SICA has already played a critical role in developing a roadmap for the implementation of the Central American Integrated Regional Program on Climate Change, Air Quality and Health with the support of the CCAC, the Pan American Health Organisation, and the United Nation Environmental Programme. 

The Council of Ministers of Health of Central America and the Dominican Republic (COMISCA) have given significant priority to health as a cross-cutting issue concerning the realisation of a healthy environment, as illustrated by the Health Agenda of Central America and the Dominican Republic (ASCARD) 2019-2030. 

Establishing sound national air quality management systems and increasing country and regional capacities to assess air pollution health risks and enable SLCP mitigation action requires upgrading, expanding, and integrating air pollution monitoring networks for the SICA region at both local and national levels.

This project was designed based on three actions from the proposed roadmap related to developing a solid legal framework, strengthening  air quality monitory networks in the region, and capacity building.



Objectives

This project seeks to leverage the roadmap for the implementation of the Central American Integrated Regional Program on Climate Change to strengthen governance mechanisms, foster high-level political commitment, and maximise the benefits of implementation of regional and national strategies related to climate change, air quality, and health.

This project will focus on upgrading, expanding, and integrating air pollution networks for the SICA region to establish a sound air quality management systems and to increase country and regional capacities to assess air pollution health risks and enable SLCP mitigation action. Building on the achievements supported by the CCAC, this work will advance short-lived climate pollutant reductions as a priority of SICA countries in particular in medium to large cities. 

Actions

 To achieve these objectives the project will:

  • Implement a high-level policy dialogue platform to exchange experience and maximise synergies across the LAC region regarding air quality and health law. 
  • Organise a meeting to strengthen activities for SICA countries to support the implementation and or improvement of air quality and SCLP monitoring networks.  
  • Develop a set of training sessions in support to the implementation of SICA integrated roadmap on Climate Change, Air Quality and Health. 
  • Develop a regional model law on air quality and health to support member states regulatory development. 
  • Prepare an annual high-level SLCP, air quality and health event to present national and regional progress on roadmap implementation. 
  • Design and present a prototype hydro-meteorological and air pollution monitoring station.
  • Host the regional events for Clean Air of Blue Skies Day focused on integrated action.

 

Project reference: [NAT-22-001 - Central America - Achieving air quality, climate, and health goals]