English Summary

The Air Protection Associations (Luftvårdsförbunden) in the south-east of Sweden

Luftvårdsförbunden prioritizes good air quality

I south-Eastern Sweden there are four different air protection associations. These associations follow the county boarders, and they consist of Jönköping’s county, Kalmar county, Kronoberg’s county as well as Östergötland’s county. The associations are non-profit, made up of local companies, boroughs, institutions and other stakeholders as members, who care about our communities’ air quality or have an interest in air protection.

The associations organize and finance programs which measures the effects of air pollution resulting in acidifying and fertilizing of our environment. The results of these programs create a picture of how air pollution and its effects vary. The associations work to make sure action is taken to improve the air quality and that the efforts in air protection in Sweden is coordinated and followed. The boroughs responsibilities of controlling the air quality in densely populated areas is coordinated through the Luftvårdsförbundet (the Air Protection Association).

Information and presentation of the results of the research programs are important parts of the associations purview. The association is funded through member’s fees. The membership improves awareness of the scope of the self-assessment clause regarding the responsibility of staying informed in relation to the current state of the “recipient”. Miljöbalken and its cluses and regulations regarding the “environmental quality norms” for the air is what directs the Air Protection Association work.

The associations contribute to the environmental goals

In 1999 the Swedish government decided on “miljökvalitetsmålen” (the environmental quality objectives), there amongst the goal of Fresh Air. The government decided that it is every person’s responsibility to contribute to reach the objectives agreed upon. The data gathered complements the national environmental monitoring and is used as the basis upon which we measure the progress of reaching the Swedish environmental objectives.

Climate and health

Air pollution is linked to an increase in health issues, such as cancer, allergies, respiratory disease and generally a deteriorating health. In a global context, our climate is affected by air pollution through its contributing effect of, among other things, the greenhouse effect and the thinning of the ozone layer. Local and regional air pollution contributes to an increase in acidification and overfertilization of the ground and water.

It is greatly important that Air Protection Association’s operations can continue to develop.

Together, the county-wide surveys are an important complement to local and national environmental monitoring. The Air Protection Association’s membership recruitment takes place continuously and new members are most welcome.