London breaches annual air pollution limit in just five days

London breaches annual air pollution limit in just five days”

"With the new year only days old, it's scandalous that air pollution limits for the entire year have already been breached", Friends of the Earth (FoE) campaigner Jenny Bates said.

Later this morning, between 5am and 7am, another two hours of readings above 200 ug/m3 of NO2 were recorded - pushing the site well above the European Union limit.

Monitoring by the London Air project from King's College, London, showed that the rules had been breached by 9pm on Thursday for the pollutant, which is linked to heart and lung problems and even early deaths.

The news saw a London street break the rules even earlier than past year, when Putney High Street exceeded the annual limit for nitrogen dioxide by January 8.

The Mayor's office announced today plans for 10 new "Low Emission Bus Zones" across London in 2017, with a host of "greener" buses set to be deployed on some of London's most polluted routes.

In April a committee of MPs called air pollution in the United Kingdom a "public health emergency".

'Road traffic is the biggest culprit - and diesel is the worst.

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Prominent air quality campaigner Alan Andrews of ClientEarth - the group who sued the United Kingdom government for failing to provide a safe environment - described the findings as shameful.

London's toxic air is nothing short of a public health emergency, and one that is responsible for the premature deaths of over 9,000 Londoners every year.

Ms Russell added: "The Mayor promised to restore London's air quality to legal and safe limits, he has a lot of work to do to turn around his predecessor's hopeless record on air pollution and come up with new measures to reduce Londoners' exposure to polluted air".

But ClientEarth lawyer Alan Andrews warned that Londoners could not wait three years and that immediate action was needed. This legislation stipulates that the limit can only be broken 18 times per year.

Sadiq is also the first Mayor of London to use electronic bus, roadside and London Underground signs to warn Londoners about the very worst pollution days.

'We urgently need to stop the sale of new diesel models until emission testing is truly fit for objective. "This is why the government must take much bolder and quicker action including planning to phase out diesel by 2025".

To make these ambitious initiatives a reality the Mayor has allocated more than £875million to help tackle this invisible killer - more than double the funding allocated by his predecessor.

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