Blue Skies WORK
"Blue Skies" is one of many popular songs whose lyrics use a "bluebird of happiness" as a symbol of cheer: "Bluebirds singing a song/Nothing but bluebirds all day long." The sunny optimism of the lyrics are undercut by the minor key giving the words an ironic feeling.
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Encouraged by the increasing interest of the international community in clean air, and emphasizing the need to make further efforts to improve air quality, including reducing air pollution, to protect human health, the General Assembly decided to designate 7 September as the International Day of Clean Air for blue skies.
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Fundamental, or blue-skies science, describes research that is driven by a desire to further our scientific understanding, without necessarily considering specific real-world applications. They play an important role in increasing public interest in science and technology, perhaps even more so than some applied scientific research topics. Notable examples are the Big Bang theory, ancient fossils, the Higgs Boson particle, and space exploration.
The same applies in the Earth sciences: fundamental geomorphological or volcanological research helps to predict landslides and volcanic eruptions, or mitigate their impacts; study of past climate helps anticipate the effects of global warming; techniques developed during blue-sky geochemical or geophysical research finds applications in mineral exploration; landscape research, and the processes that shape them, has led to a greater understanding of our living environment, allowing us to safeguard and manage natural risks more effectively; plate tectonics research is helping to increase our understanding of earthquake and volcanic hazards in densely populated coastal regions.
As a shift towards impact-based scientific funding occurs, a critical challenge facing the fundamental sciences is securing funding for such research. Public sector funding schemes (including the European Research Council) now require assessments of potential impacts as a part of the evaluation process. Reduced budgets resulting from the economic down-turn has contributed to this policy change. Not all scientific discovery can be pre-emptively or immediately quantified, thus policies to ensure the continuation of blue-skies sciences need to be enforced.
In the run-up to the International Day of Clean Air for blue skies, UNEP joined partners to announce the global elimination of the use of leaded petrol, a major achievement that will prevent more than 1.2 million premature deaths and save USD 2.45 trillion a year.
The International Day of Clean Air for blue skies, first marked in 2020, calls for increased international cooperation at the global, regional and sub-regional levels. It provides a platform for strengthening global solidarity as well as political momentum for action against air pollution and climate change, including actions like the increased collection of air quality data, carrying out joint research, developing new technologies and sharing best practices.
Emphasizing the need to make further efforts to improve air quality, including reducing air pollution, to protect human health; acknowledging that improving air quality can enhance climate change mitigation and that climate change mitigation efforts can improve air quality; the United Nationals General Assembly decided to designate 7 September as the International Day of Clean Air for blue skies. The first International Day was marked in 2020, calling for global action to beat air pollution. 041b061a72