Design of the Low-Emission Zone in Bilbao

7 December 2023
Vista de Bilbao, que acogerá el Foro de Transformación Digital "Vida urbana inteligente"

“TECNALIA supports municipalities to design low-emission zones using air quality monitoring and modelling”

Bilbao City Council trusted TECNALIA to design its low-emission zone which drives air quality improvement through environmental monitoring, helping to protect the health of citizens

Bilbao City Council has taken a decisive step towards a cleaner and healthier future by approving the draft ordinance that will regulate the low-emission zone (LEZ), as required by the Law on Climate Change and Energy Transition for municipalities with more than 50,000 inhabitants. This measure aims to improve air quality and mitigate climate change, resulting in improvements to citizens’ health and the quality of urban life. As part of this process, and in order to comply with legislative requirements, Bilbao City Council has entrusted the TECNALIA- Kunak partnership with the task.

Environmental monitoring network

In response, TECNALIA has designed a monitoring network of 41 Kunak AIR Pro stations based on a pollution map (base scenario) generated using air quality modelling techniques. In this way, the deployed network is optimised and spatially representative, as it is capable of providing suitable air quality analysis thanks to the reliability and accuracy of the data provided by the sensor network.

Subsequently, TECNALIA analysed mobility and emissions scenarios related to the future application of the LEZ in collaboration with Leber. This was done to assess their impact on air quality, making it possible to select the scenario that best meets the reduction targets set by the City Council.

In the coming years, the project team will continuously monitor air quality levels using the designed network and by updating pollution maps on an annual basis.

This work has been carried out in accordance with the provisions of Royal Decree 1052/2022 of 27 December which regulates low-emission zones, and in line with Royal Decree 102/2011 of 28 January on air quality improvement.

Supporting the design of LEZs

TECNALIA combines its air quality monitoring and modelling solutions with its extensive experience in the area of atmospheric pollution to support municipalities in designing LEZs, ensuring compliance with RD 1052/2022 at all times.