Spain reacts to being declared Europe’s most polluted country.

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Caption: Spain comes under pressure to deliver real climate change action. Source: PxHere

IN 2015, a report by the European Environment Agency (EEA) labelled Spain as the most polluted country in Europe.

With growing concerns of pollution worldwide, Spain has been put under the spotlight to do its part in the fight against climate change.

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The countries government has been working hard to turn the nation’s figures around and bring it back in line with the rest of Europe.

One of the main topics that Spain has tried to legislate is the use of “single use plastics”. Throughout the European Union, Public led campaigns, governments and private organizations are all campaigning for global reform. However, Spain has been a little late to join its counterparts.

The Spanish government has put into place measures that promise to eliminate the use of plastic bags in shops by 2021 but lobbyists are fighting for more action to be taken, especially in the public sector.


Spain still has a long way to go, in 2016, despite actions already in place for a number of years, micro plastics were still found in some examples of table salt. In 2018, a sperm whale washed up onto Spanish shores killed by the ingestion of huge amounts of plastic in the Mediterranean.

The second largest contribution to pollution figures in Spain is Air Pollution.


In 2008 the Spanish government put into place the Spanish Strategy of Climate Change and Clean Energy. The following years the country went into an economic crisis which put the plan on hold. The 2015 report was published the year after the crisis ended so Spain can be forgiven for not meeting certain deadlines.

However the Sustainable Economy Act has given Spain until 2021 to dramatically reduce its emissions.

Cities like Barcelona and Madrid are leading the way in banning diesel cars from certain areas of the city, and now every car needs a special certification from the DGT based on emissions.

These steps don’t seem to be enough as in 2017, a report was published that revealed that most of the inhabitants of Spain are breathing air which could be harmful to health.




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