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elearning Air Convention

Have you ever wondered what causes air pollution? Are you interested in learning about the effects of air pollution on your health and the environment? Do you want to learn how we can jointly work on cleaner air? If you replied yes to any of these questions, then we encourage you to take the e-learning course on the UNECE Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution (Air Convention) and its protocols. The course is hosted on the UNCC:learn platform, which is managed by the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR).  

Click here for a direct link to the course in English and Russian.

You can also watch the video of the launch event.

Air pollution impacts our health, environment and economy. Air pollutants come from multiple sources, such as traffic, industry and agriculture, and are transported over large distances and across borders. It is therefore paramount that we take action together — across sectors and national boundaries.

To improve air quality, UNECE member States have been working successfully since 1979 to reduce air pollution in the region through the Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution. This cooperation has led to emission reductions, cleaner air, healthier forests and prevented premature deaths.

However, more needs to be done to achieve cleaner air within the UNECE region and beyond. The Convention has engaged in fostering cooperation between regional initiatives around the world and shared the Convention’s experience and lessons learnt with a view to advancing a shared response to addressing air pollution globally.

To assist countries in effectively addressing air pollution and improve air quality management, the new e-learning course aims to raise awareness about air pollution and its effects, ways to prevent and reduce harmful emissions, and the Convention and its protocols as an international framework for cooperation on cleaner air.

Course structure

The course is divided into 4 modules: 

  • Module 1: The Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution
  • Module 2: The Protocol to Abate Acidification, Eutrophication and Ground-Level Ozone (Gothenburg Protocol)
  • Module 3: The Protocol on Heavy Metals
  • Module 4: The Protocol on Persistent Organic Pollutants


What will you learn?

After completing the course, learners will be able to:

  • Identify key air pollutants and their sources and effects
  • Recall measures to reduce and prevent air pollution
  • Recognize the value of the Convention as a framework for international cooperation to reduce air pollution
  • Define basic principles under the Convention and its protocols
  • Explain the basic obligations under the Convention’s protocols
  • Identify the key stakeholders and processes under the Convention and its protocols


Who is this course for?

The course is primarily designed to build capacities of policymakers, government officials, staff from intergovernmental/non-governmental organizations, private sector professionals, students/academia, and other stakeholders. Taking this course should enable learners to contribute to, and ultimately drive forward actions on cleaner air.

Will you get a certificate?

At the end of the course, learners can take an assessment to receive a certificate of successful completion. Once the certification criteria have been met (passing score 70%) and after filling in a course evaluation form, participants will be able to download their certificate from the course’s webpage.


This project was funded by the German Federal Environment Ministry’s Advisory Assistance Programme (AAP) for environmental protection in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia and other countries neighbouring the European Union. It was supervised by the German Environment Agency (UBA). The responsibility for the content of this course lies with the authors.

The project was also carried out with funding by the European Union and Sweden.