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Zero Pollution Action Plan

Towards zero pollution for air, water and soil. 


The zero pollution vision for 2050 is for air, water and soil pollution to be reduced to levels no longer considered harmful to health and natural ecosystems, that respect the boundaries with which our planet can cope, thereby creating a toxic-free environment.

This is translated into key 2030 targets to speed up reducing pollution at source. These targets include:

  • improving air quality to reduce the number of premature deaths caused by air pollution by 55%;
  • improving water quality by reducing waste, plastic litter at sea (by 50%) and microplastics released into the environment (by 30%);
  • improving soil quality by reducing nutrient losses and chemical pesticides’ use by 50%;
  • reducing by 25% the EU ecosystems where air pollution threatens biodiversity;
  • reducing the share of people chronically disturbed by transport noise by 30%, and 
  • significantly reducing waste generation and by 50% residual municipal waste.

The Action Plan aims to strengthen the EU green, digital and economic leadership, whilst creating a healthier, socially fairer Europe and planet. It provides a compass to mainstream pollution prevention in all relevant EU policies, to step up implementation of the relevant EU legislation and to identify possible gaps.


The European Green Deal announced headline actions on zero pollution.

You can track the progress of the individual flagships and actions announced in the Zero Pollution Action Plan:

See progress on actions

The Zero Pollution Monitoring and Outlook, published on 8 December 2022, offers a snapshot of the current state of the pollution in the EU, and answers questions on the pollution trends over the past years, and whether we are likely to achieve 2030 zero pollution targets.

See progress on zero pollution targets


Previous and upcoming zero pollution actions

  1. 18 April 2024
    Sixth meeting of the Zero Pollution Stakeholder Platform
  2. 24 and 25 January 2024
    Zero Pollution stakeholder workshop: ‘Zero Pollution Monitoring and Outlook’
  3. 9 November 2023
    Fifth meeting of the Zero Pollution Stakeholder Platform
  4. September- October 2023
    Adoption of several initiatives on microplastics
  5. 14 July 2023
    Proposal to ban all remaining intentional uses of mercury in the EU
  6. 20 April 2023
    Fourth meeting of the Zero Pollution Stakeholder Platform
  7. 26 October 2022
    The Commission proposed stronger rules on ambient air, surface and groundwater pollutants, and treating urban wastewater
  8. 11 October 2022
    Third meeting of the Zero Pollution Stakeholder Platform
  9. 24 and 25 May 2022
    Stakeholder workshop ‘Towards a Zero Pollution Monitoring and Outlook’
  10. 25 April 2022
    Second meeting of the Zero Pollution Stakeholder Platform
  11. 5 April 2022
    Adoption of the legislative package on industrial emissions
  12. 16 December 2021
    First meeting of the Zero Pollution Stakeholder Platform
  13. 3 November 2021
    Deadline for the call for expression of interest
  14. 7 October 2021
    Launch of the call for expression of interest for the Zero Pollution Stakeholder Platform

    See the call

  15. 4 June 2021
    Launch of the Zero Pollution Stakeholder Platform
  16. 31 May - 4 June 2021
    EU Green Week 2021 on the theme of zero pollution
  17. 12 May 2021
    Commission adoption of zero pollution action plan
  18. 10 February 2021
    Stakeholder workshop on the zero pollution action plan
  19. 11 November 2020
    Launch of zero pollution action plan public consultation
  20. 14 October 2020
    Presentation of chemicals strategy
  21. 1 October 2020
    Presentation of zero pollution action plan roadmap
  22. 11 December 2019
    Presentation of the European Green Deal

Policy areas

  • Air : EU action to improve air quality and reduce air pollution.
  • Chemicals : EU action to ensure chemicals are safe, for health and the environment.
  • Circular economy: The EU’s transition to a circular economy with a focus on green growth.
  • Industrial emissions : EU action to make industry more sustainable and reduce industrial emissions.
  • Marine and coastal environment : EU action to protect Europe’s coasts, seas and oceans.
  • Nature and biodiversity: EU action on environmental conservation and protection.
  • Noise : EU action to reduce environmental noise pollution.
  • Plastics : EU action on plastic production and pollution to contribute to a circular economy.
  • Soil and land : EU action for the sustainable use of soil and land.
  • Water : EU action on water issues, to protect water resources.