The initiative based on civic participation has proven that there is widespread support for the issue of air pollution. However, it is impossible to bring all aspects of air quality under one heading and the approach to this must be clarified.

Before we can start measuring 'air quality', we need to be well aware of exactly what we are going to measure, which uniform measuring instruments we are going to use and which uniform guidelines we will use. Flanders has already set the tone with guiding decrees, but Europe also needs clear and solid standards. VITO is contributing to the evaluation of the reliability of the measuring instruments and to drafting up clear standards.

When we talk about air quality, we must talk about both outdoor and indoor air quality. The question regarding the impact of air quality on health in cities and around airports has led to several projects being launched in order to map this. The fact that VITO has carried out pioneering work in this area is demonstrated by the presence of foreign delegates attending VITO courses and the fact that models developed by VITO are being enthusiastically adopted on an international level.

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