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Greening Governance Seminar Series: Toxic Air: The Challenge of Ozone Pollution

Join leading air pollution experts for a conversation on the challenges of reducing ozone pollution.

Join the conversation: #GreeningGovernance, #airpollution, #ozone, #ozonepollution


Presentation Slides

About the Seminar

Surface ozone is a dangerous climate and air pollutant, damaging human health, ecosystems, crops and other plants, and contributing significantly to global warming. Ozone is created when gases released by cars, electric utilities, landfills, biomass fires, agriculture and industrial processes, among other sources, react with each other and sunlight. In 2017 alone, it contributed to 500,000 deaths globally, and as many as 23 million emergency room visits in 2015. It also substantially damages crop yields, with annual losses reaching up to 227 metric tons.

Controlling ozone is a significant governance challenge requiring a comprehensive, inclusive pollution management approach that involves strong enforcement of clean air laws, robust air pollution monitoring, and an emission inventory that can accurately identify sources of pollution. Controlling pollution requires implementation of a wide range of sector-specific control strategies.

This seminar will focus on comprehensive airshed strategies currently being used to control ozone around the world, as well as the social implications of air pollution management. It will highlight the importance of coordinated, multipollutant management across airshed regions and the critical role that governments, civil society, and citizen actors play.

This seminar is the first in a series exploring air pollutant challenges and the implications of a multi-pollutant approach to air pollution reduction.


  • Beatriz Cárdenas, Director Air Quality Program, WRI Mexico
  • Susan Anenberg, Associate Professor, Milken Institute School of Public Health, George Washington University
  • Terry Keating, Senior Scientist, Office of Research and Development, Environmental Protection Agency
  • Moderated by: Jessica Seddon, Director Of Integrated Urban Strategy, WRI Ross Center For Sustainable Cities

About the Series

WRI's Greening Governance Seminar Series bridges the divide between the governance and environmental communities to identify solutions that benefit people and the planet.

  • Why do some environmental policies succeed in one country but fail in another?
  • What will it take to transform the Paris Agreement’s ambitious commitments into actionable policies?
  • How can decision-makers engage a range of stakeholders, from average citizens to Fortune 500 companies, to build support for policies that protect natural resources and the communities that depend on them?
  • How can governments sustain this environmental action across election cycles?
  • Many of the answers to these questions are, at heart, issues of governance.

Increasing public participation in environmental decision-making can deepen civil society’s commitment to climate change mitigation and yield more equitable, effective policies. Enhancing government transparency equips communities with the information that they need to engage in these policy-making processes. Strengthening accountability frameworks helps ensure that governments make progress on their Paris Agreement emissions reduction targets. In short, good governance can improve climate and environmental outcomes.

Yet the governance and climate communities continue to work in silos, conducting research and implementing programs that remain largely divorced from one another.

WRI’s Greening Governance Seminar Series seeks to bridge this divide by bringing together leading experts from both fields to discuss the intersection of their work, the most pressing environmental governance issues at hand, and solutions that benefit people and the planet.

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