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UNDA Project 1819AE: North Macedonia - Institutional air quality management


The third EPR of North Macedonia pointed out the impact of air pollution on human health and the lack of data and monitoring of the implementation of policy documents. The population is exposed to PM2.5 and PM10, imposing threats on its health. However, there is (currently) no monitoring system of the mortality rate caused by indoor and outdoor air pollution. A good monitoring would ensure that Air Quality policies are efficient, actions to mitigate effects are well designed and support the achievement of the SDGs related to air and health quality, namely SDG 3, SDG 11 among others.

Efforts were made by the Ministry in charge of air policies with international technical assistance. The current air protection framework was created in 2012 but the documents have not been updated since then. In addition, their implementation is not reported, which makes it difficult to evaluate the performance of the measures. The policies do not benefit from enough political background. Data and coordination between the authorities in charge is lacking. 

UNECE assisted North Macedonia through the preparation of a guideline for a monitoring and evaluation framework and a model for planning, monitoring and evaluation of the Air Quality policies papers. The guideline targeted different aspects of Air Quality Management (AQM) policies. The following conclusions were reached. The institutional structure can be strengthened by restructuring and developing different levels of bodies involved. Special emphasis was put on the need to develop a guidance document to evaluate policy papers and adapt the programmes in-process. The document should incorporate a number of key points to ensure the effectiveness of the implemented measures, such as the involvement of the stakeholders, the issue framing and its targets and deadlines. The evaluation of the National Clean Air Programme for the period 2018–2020 using this assessment guidance document served as an example on how it should be used. In the aim of achieving national targets but also the SDGs, the guideline emphasized efficient data collection mechanisms. Finally, the role of the consultation and the different means to collect feedbacks as well as to raise awareness among the different stakeholders have been underlined and encouraged to be included in every AQM policies process.