The United Nations is currently implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, comprising of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) defined into targets measured with Indicators. NOA has created an online platform utilizing earth observation data to assess a specific air quality and health-related indicator (11.6.2) for all of Europe – annual mean levels of fine particulate matter in cities (population-weighted).
An ever-increasing number of Europeans lives in cities, which serve as a de facto concentration and population exposure hot spot of poor air quality. How a city is defined alters the indicator’s outcome and prohibits comparability, thus the European Commission is testing two city definitions in an effort to harmonise the concept of urbanisation.
The SDG 11.6.2 Platform utilizes Copernicus Services and the Joint Research Centre’s Global Human Settlement Layer to assess the air quality indicator across time and geographically, testing its sensitivity to the city definition, and producing a tool that goes beyond monitoring air quality to actually address the SDG goal and underlining policy implications.