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Project Cairo Air Improvement project

Good/best practices in the framework of Horizon 2020


Issues: industrial emissions 


Project typology: pollution reduction

The project aimed at working on methods that would reduce air pollution in Greater Cairo through enhancing the air quality through working on two important sectors the lead smelters as related to industrial emissions and the conversion of vehicles to CNG as related to the transport sector . Also, it aims at monitoring the air quality in Cairo city to trace the project results. This project, is described as best practices because it is one of the largest air pollution control  effective activities funded by a donor agency, worked to reduce levels of airborne lead, particulate matter and other contaminants in Cairo through an integrated program of technical, policy, legal, and institutional activities. The project produced new vehicle emissions standards, designed a vehicle testing network, and opened the first vehicle emissions testing station on the African continent. Thus providing a proactive approach for pollution reduction. Also, the project team designed and procured a fleet of chassis for buses that run on compressed natural gas, and helped launch Cairo’s first public CNG-fueled bus. The team worked with relevant stakeholders to relocate Egypt’s largest lead smelting company, which was responsible for 60 percent of the lead pollution in its densely populated residential neighbourhood, to an industrial site outside Cairo. The team designed a new facility and helped develop a contract with strict guidelines for monitoring emissions. This has been cost effective in controlling pollution for lead smelters that used to pay the price for its pollution Furthermore, the project operationalized the first reliable ambient air quality monitoring program in Cairo, drawing on data from a network of 36 monitoring stations. Finally, the program has helped Egyptian authorities plan and implement successful public information campaigns for unleaded gas and vehicle tune-ups. In other words, the project is institutionalised and sustained through the network of monitoring system . It applied an integrated system for better management of air pollution in Greater Cairo.

Area(s) and focus(es) of the project
  • Polluted Areas (projects)
    • Capacity building
    • Data collection, analysis, monitoring
    • Integrated management of highly polluted urban areas
    • Management of energy and transport systems
    • Reduce air pollution
Project scale Local
Tools Preparation and implementation of a air emissions management plan; Air monitoring; Expansion of the use of compressed natural gas as fuel for fleets and public transport; Vehicle emissions testing; Public awareness campaign
Locations Greater Cairo
Budget 60 US$ m (=42.476.173,01 €)
Timeframe 1996 - 2003
Implementing organisation(s) U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID);
Chemonics International
Contact Mr. Gilbert Richard
Donor(s) U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)
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Page last updated: 26/06/2008