92% of people worldwide do not breathe clean air. Besides, ground-level ozone pollution is expected to reduce staple crop yields by 26% by 2030.

Air pollution is a growing public health challenge that costs the global economy $5 trillion every year in welfare costs. Approximately 7 million people worldwide die prematurely each year from it, with about 4 million of these deaths occurring in Asia-Pacific. This is why the United Nations’ World Environment Day 2019 was hosted by China, with a theme of “Air Pollution”.

World Environment Day is the biggest annual event for positive environmental action and takes place every June 5. On this special day, SUNRISE organized a Twitter chat last Wednesday, in order to discuss about the role of renewable energies in reducing air pollution. The one-hour online discussion started at 4pm CET and had as subject experts:

  1. Kate Black, Communications Director at Metabolic. An organization based in The Netherlands that tackles global sustainability challenges and accelerates the transition to a circular economy, through systems thinking, data science, and innovation.
  2. Julio Lloret, Group Leader at the Institute of Chemical Research of Catalonia (ICIQ). A center of excellence committed to performing research at the frontier of knowledge in two main areas: catalysis and renewable energy.
  3. Marcella Bonchio, Full Professor of Advanced Organic Chemistry and Coordinator of the Nano & Molecular Catalysis Laboratory (NMC LAB), at the University of Padova. The main research areas of the NMC LAB are: conversion of solar energy, energy storage systems, and energy saving technologies.
  4. Philippe Schild, Senior Expert of the Renewable Energy Unit of the Directorate General (DG) of Research & Innovation at the European Commission. This DG manages the European Union’s EU’s Horizon 2020 program, among others.

Check out our #SUN_WED2019 Twitter chat wrap-up on June 5! Besides our subject experts, there were more people who joined the discussion by sharing their opinion on how to reduce carbon pollution!