COVID-19 measures have mixed impacts on the environment

The COVID-19 pandemic and resulting restrictions imposed to fight the spread of the disease have provided some short-term positive impacts on Europe’s environment, according to a European Environment Agency (EEA) briefing published today. These include temporary improvements in air quality, lower greenhouse gas emissions and lower levels of noise pollution. However, the assessment also stresses that there have been negative consequences such as increased use of single-use plastics, and that ways out of the pandemic should focus on reshaping our unsustainable production and consumption systems to achieve long-term environmental benefits.

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