Pollution deal, North American climate promises, UK carbon budge and sun shines on India

EU countries sign air pollution pact

The number of early deaths that are caused by air pollution in the European Union could be halved by 2030, according to a deal between the European Parliament and EU countries. At the moment, the premature mortality tally runs at about 400,000 per year.

EU countries will cut emissions of the main air pollutants: ammonia, fine particulate matter, nitrogen oxides, non-methane volatile organic compounds and sulphur dioxide. This has the potential to affect many sectors. Ammonia emissions are caused by agriculture, while fine particles and nitrogen oxides are emitted from vehicle exhausts. Cuts to sulphur dioxide will require more controls on the burning of fossil fuels. The deal must still be ratified by the European Parliament, which had wanted deeper pollutant cuts and thus fewer early deaths, but was rebuffed by the EU countries. In principle, the deal will apply to the United Kingdom, although it will depend on exactly when and under what terms Britain exits the EU.

North American climate pledge

The “three amigos” of President Barack Obama, Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican president Enrique Peña Nieto promised at the end of June to “strive to achieve” a goal for North America to...

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