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European air pollution slowly improving - but still well over UN limits

File photo dated 02/02/07 of car exhaust emissions. A study by researchers at the universities of Oxford and Bath found that pollution from cars and vans cost almost £6 billion in damage to health each year in the UK, with the worst impact from diesel vehicles. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Wednesday June 6, 2018. The research suggests that the health costs to the NHS and society was worst in cities, with the cost from the average car in inner London over the vehicle's lifetime on the road at £7,714. See PA story ENVIRONMENT Pollution. Photo credit should read: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire

By Associated Press Reporters

The European Union's environmental agency says air pollution is slowly improving across the continent but still exceeds the bloc's limits and guidelines from the UN health agency.

The European Environment Agency has issued its 2018 report on air quality and said emissions from road traffic, agriculture, energy production, industry and households are churning out pollutants like particulate matter, nitrogen dioxide and ground-level ozone.

Agency head Hans Bruyninckx said: "Air pollution is an invisible killer and we need to step up our efforts to address the causes."

He said Europe must "redouble its efforts to reduce emissions caused by transport, energy and agriculture and invest in making them cleaner and more sustainable".

The report was based on more than 2,500 monitoring stations across Europe in 2016, the latest available data.