The City of Warsaw in Poland, Bloomberg Philanthropies, and the Clean Air Fund are working together to improve air quality in the city. The Breathe Warsaw initiative will take advantage of Bloomberg Philanthropies’ experience partnering with large cities, and the Clean Air Fund’s expertise in global clean air campaigns. The air quality in Warsaw currently exceeds both the World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines and EU pollution limits.
Plans are underway to:
- make full use of Warsaw’s large network of air quality sensors. Breathe Warsaw will use this network and its data to develop a comprehensive air quality database to better understand pollution sources and guide future interventions;
- design an effective and data-driven low-emission zone (Lez). A recent report by the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) showed that old diesel vehicles are the greatest contributors to air pollution in Warsaw. Breathe Warsaw will provide technical and policy research support to deliver a low-emission zone by the year 2024;
- advance cleaner heating systems. Coal heating is also a significant contributor to Warsaw’s poor air quality. Substituting coal for a cleaner fuel to heat people’s homes will be a major factor in improving air quality in the city. The initiative will strengthen technical support for collecting, analyzing, sharing, and applying air quality data to inform decision-making and regulation to accelerate the phase-out of coal heating;
- share best practices. The initiative will help connect local leaders and organizations in Warsaw to exchange knowledge and best practices with each other and cities in the region and around the world; and
- secure public support for clean air action. Breathe Warsaw will mobilize local partners for awareness and educational campaigns to support clean air actions.
“Warsaw is not afraid to face its challenges and the fight against air pollution is definitely one of them,” said Rafał Trzaskowski, mayor of Warsaw. “We are joining an ambitious project that will strengthen our current efforts to improve air quality in the city, to fight climate change and improve the health of our citizens. Ambitious goals require specific, professional actions. That is why we started a partnership with entities who are experts in improving air quality.”