Black Carbon and Other Air Pollutants in Italian Ports and Coastal Areas: Problems, Solutions and Implications for Policies

Thomas L. Brewer
2020 Applied Sciences  
Ships' emissions of air pollutants pose problems for local and regional public health and agricultural production, as well as global climate change. The Italian government's endorsement in 2019 of the creation of a Mediterranean Emission Control Area is a reflection of increasing concern about the emissions. Also, ongoing developments in the International Maritime Organization and in the European Union add to the Italian government's maritime shipping agenda and increase its complexity and
more » ... tainty. In that context, this review paper addresses two central questions: What are the consequences for human health and agricultural production of ships' emissions in Italian ports and coastal areas? How can their emissions be reduced? The approach to these questions is inter-disciplinary. It applies the results of studies in atmospheric chemistry and physics; maritime shipping engineering; public health; agriculture; economics; and international law and policymaking to assess current and prospective policy issues in Italy. The principal conclusions are that: (1) Black carbon emissions are threats to human health and agricultural production in Italy, as well as to the global climate. (2) It is important that black carbon emissions receive more serious attention in policymaking processes in order to reflect the significant analytic progress that has been made in terms of understanding the problems it poses and the technological and policy solutions. (3) There are cost-effective, emission-reducing measures that are readily available, as well as other measures needing more time before full-scale implementation. (4) Although existing multi-level governance systems pose complex analytic and policymaking challenges, they also offer opportunities to institute new policies with significant short-term and long-term co-benefits from reductions in emissions.
doi:10.3390/app10238544 fatcat:sd5qt754qze63new4eleflumqe