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The Foundation Course on Air Quality Management in Asia is for adult learners studying the issue without the support of a class room teacher. It is aimed at students with some basic knowledge of environment and air pollution issues.

What is air quality management?

Urban air pollution affects the health, well-being and life chances of hundreds of million men, women and children in Asia every day. It is responsible for an estimated 537,000 premature deaths annually with indoor air being responsible for over double this number of deaths. It is often the poor and socially marginalized who tend to suffer disproportionately form the effects of deteriorating air quality due to living near sources of pollution.

Pakistan - Karachi - Air Pollution in Asia - Photograph of Haze

The ultimate goal of air quality management is to ensure that air pollution concentrations do not exceed defined target levels (e.g. air quality standards, target values for outdoor air quality), and that human health and the environment are essentially protected. Air quality management comprises the process of monitoring and control of air emissions to eliminate or limit the impact on the population and the environment. Appropriate policies and strategies to prevent and control air pollution need to be developed and implemented with the support of numerous stakeholders from government institutions, research institutes, non-governmental organisations and private organisations.

What will you learn from the Foundation Course?

The Foundation Course has been compiled by an international team of air pollution specialists and aims to provide the student with a good grounding in the mains issue relevant to each aspect of air quality management. It provides an opportunity to develop an understanding of the basic components required to formulate a programme to manage urban air pollution and to achieve better air quality. The Foundation Course consists of six modules:

1. Urban Air Pollution in Asia
2. Emissions
3. Modelling
4. Monitoring
5. Impacts
6. Governance and Policies
Foundation Course Air Quality Managment Course Modules Graphic

Each module is divided into a number of sections devoted to a different aspect of the issue together with examples and key references. By working through the six modules you will gradually achieve a higher level of understanding of urban air pollution and the measures taken to monitor air quality and to prevent and control urban air pollution.

The Foundation Course will provide you with an understanding of the:


causes of air pollution and the different types of air pollution which exist as well as the basic stages in air quality management system;


role of emissions inventories in air quality management and the different measures available to control emissions from different sources;


basic components of an air simulation model which is used to estimate air pollutant concentrations in space and time;


different issues which need to be considered in the design of an air quality monitoring programme;


impacts of common air pollutants on human health and environment and the methods used to study and assess the impact of air pollution on the health of a given population and the associated economic costs;


 issues which need to be addressed in an overall policy framework for clean air.