Wednesday, 19 September, 2018

Millions of British children exposed to harmful pollution

Children are closer to exhaust pipes Image Children are closer to exhaust pipes
Theresa Hayes | 24 June, 2018, 13:07

"The council is undertaking work to identify those most likely to be adversely affected by the introduction of a Clean Air Zone".

Pledges to take action include: leaving the vehicle at home just one day a week; car-sharing when possible; working from home regularly; walking and cycling more; and encouraging friends to do the same.

Copeland, Barrow, Allerdale and Carlisle all came in the top 10 when it came to low levels of air pollution coupled with affordable housing.

The move, by Metrolink owner Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM), is part of a drive to encourage people to think about changing travel habits to improve air quality.

It comes after Leeds City Council this week said that buses, coaches and HGVs could be charged £50 per day to enter a Clean Air Zone in the city from January 2020, but private cars would not be subject to the payment.

The children's charity is calling on the Government to prioritise and fund measures which target the most polluted areas and protect children from toxic air in the places where they live, learn and play.

"This is not about making money, but saving lives - in fact, in an ideal world, no one would have to pay a Clean Air Zone charge because everyone would be driving a low or zero-emission vehicle or walking, cycling or using public transport instead".

Wandsworth council is holding a series of events across the borough, including a string of events in borough schools teaching young people about reducing air pollution.

Meanwhile on Thursday (21st June) Green Party campaigners were out on York's streets urging drivers to "switch off while waiting" as part of National Clean Air Day.

But too many of us breathe dirty air every day, especially in our towns and cities.

According to the sustainable transport group Greener Journeys, if we all switched from auto to bus just one journey a month, it would mean one billion fewer vehicle journeys on our roads, saving two million tonnes of Carbon dioxide every year, helping to ease pollution and congestion.

Waltham Forest council in the north east of London is also working with schools to promote Clean Air Day, having recruited more than 30 schoolchildren to become Air Quality Ambassadors ahead of the event. "It might take me a couple of minutes longer but if it reduces Ariyan's exposure to air pollution, then it's worth it".

The council is proposing to introduce a Clean Air Zone (CAZ).

Auto parking-operator CitiPark is supporting the day by raising awareness of how electric vehicles can help to reduce air pollution.