About Rapid Urban Assessment

Urban air pollution is very serious in most South Asian cities. With the shift in the rural populations to urban cities, cities of all sizes are set to expand rapidly in the coming decades. In addition, most cities have no comprehensive system for linking emissions from the various polluting sectors to health impacts and for assessing the effectiveness of policy measures to protect urban populations. This urban focus is a priority for the Malé Declaration as urban emissions make a core contribution to transboundary air pollution and their prevention and control is vital to achieving the aims of the Malé Declaration. The Malé Declaration has developed 'Rapid Urban Assessment' urban-scale projects in Hyderabad, India, in phase II and Kathmandu, Nepal, in phase III.

Malé Declaration achievements and results

• The application of rapid urban assessment methods has developed capacity in Kathmandu, Nepal, and Hyderabad, India, to undertake rapid urban emission inventories which are the basis for policy development and health risk assessment in cities.
• The validity of these inventories has been cross-checked by monitoring data which show reasonable agreement.
• The work conducted under the Malé Declaration has made it clear that the most important pollutant in Kathmandu is particulate matter, largely from the transport sector, which is known to have the greatest impact on human health.
• The Malé Declaration now has the capacity to calculate the distribution of emissions the rapid urban assessment methodology enabling targeted strategies to be developed to reduce air pollution in the hotspots.

South Asia Training on Rapid Urban Assessment of Air Pollution Impacts in Nepal (March, 2008)

A three-day training workshop on Rapid Urban Assessment (RUA) of air pollution impacts was organized from 5 to 7 March 2008 in Kathmandu, Nepal. The workshop was attended by representatives from National Implementing Agencies of Malé Declaration, who will implement RUA activities in their countries. The meeting discussed the results of RUA study in Kathmandu and identified the gaps in the region for conducting RUA studies. Rapid Urban Assessment (RUA) of air pollution impact is currently being conducted in Kathmandu, Nepal as part of the Phase III implementation of the Malé Declaration for Trans-boundary Air Pollution in South Asia.