Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) will lead the way in strengthening nationwide air quality standards for ozone, nitrogen dioxide and sulfur dioxide pollutants in the atmosphere.
Following an open tender process, the review into the three pollutants forms a key piece of work under the National Clean Air Agreement, at the Environment Ministers Council held in Melbourne today.
The agreement aims to strengthen the National Environment Protection (Ambient Air Quality) Measure (AAQ NEPM), which sets national air quality standards for the adequate protection of human health and wellbeing against six pollutants.
They include ozone, nitrogen dioxide, sulfur dioxide, carbon monoxide, lead and particles.
As part of the review, EPA has appointed Pacific Environment Limited, to undertake an impact statement to determine the costs and benefits of strengthening national ambient air quality standards.
The review of ozone, nitrogen dioxide and sulfur dioxide AAQ NEPM standards is supported through funding from the Australian Government with contributions from States and Territories.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Water Lisa Neville
“Victoria strongly supports revised air quality standards and welcomes the opportunity to play an active role in the review.”
“Air quality standards need to reflect contemporary scientific evidence to ensure the community is protected from any harm.”
“Australia’s air quality is generally good compared to world standards. However, more can be done as health effects, such as asthma, are still occurring at current levels in Australian cities.”
Reviewed 10 February 2021