5 January 2019
We are urging the City Council to do more to monitor and reduce air pollution across all neighbourhoods of the city.
Our Spokesperson told the Chronicle that emissions levels in the city are now becoming a "health crisis" and that the council must "get serious about reducing traffic levels across the city".
Air pollution in Newcastle continues to exceed legal limits, with the Council’s annual report showing worsening levels of toxic Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2). Air pollution is mainly caused by road traffic, and is linked to health problems including heart disease, lung cancer, dementia, and asthma. The city centre and Gosforth were set up as Air Quality Management Areas by the Council over a decade ago, receiving ongoing monitoring. Despite this, air pollution is still increasing – in some places over 50% higher than the legal limits.
Mononitoring is concentrated on the city centre and areas around Gosforth and Jesmond. But what about the West of our city? West Road (A186) was among the routes identified by Highways England as having levels of air pollution in breach of national and European guidelines. In spite of this, the Council has only one monitoring station in the West, at Denton Burn. Is this enough? Areas in the West suffer traffic problems too, like Fenham Hall Drive.
Monitoring carried out by Newcastle University's Urban Observatory elsewhere in the city found peaks in air pollution around West Jesmond Primary School due to school run traffic. With children among the most vulnerable to the negative health effects of air pollution, we believe that air quality should be monitored closely around schools and major roads right across our city.
See the Chronicle's coverage here.
Read our full story here.
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