A group of parents has called on the UK government to release funding for emergency measures to clean up illegal levels of air pollution around schools and nurseries across the country. Client Earth reports.
The National Clean Air for Children Programme will be launched at a parliamentary reception later today with more than 60 MPs, including former Labour leader Ed Miliband and ex-Conservative cabinet minister Maria Miller.
The programme, which calls for £153m of funding, was drawn up by the Clean Air Parents’ Network, which is supported by environmental law organisation ClientEarth and the British Lung Foundation.
It also has the backing of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH), the National Education Union and Asthma UK among others.
Clean Air Parents’ Network member and mother of two Stephanie Romig says her youngest son’s health issues are caused by air pollution. She said: “I’m extremely worried about the impact that air pollution is having on my children. My youngest has had chronic health problems because of the dirty air that he’s forced to breathe.”
The measures called for in the Programme include banning any new schools, nurseries or playgrounds in pollution hotspots and traffic exclusion zones around existing ones where it would help reduce children’s exposure to air pollution.
Simon Alcock, Head of UK Public Affairs for ClientEarth, which has won three court cases against the government over illegal levels of air pollution in the UK, said: “Parents are clearly and rightly concerned that the government is failing to protect their children from the harmful effects of air pollution. This is a public health emergency and the government needs to move fast to protect children’s health.”
Estimates by ClientEarth based on government data suggest that 13 schools, with a capacity of more than 6,000 places, have been built or approved on or near roads with illegal levels of nitrogen dioxide since 2012.
Read the full article UK parents demand emergency air pollution measures
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