Illegal levels of air pollution recorded again in London

Community groups have recorded illegal levels of air pollution in London. A University College London (UCL) project has found the highest level of NO2 was in central London.

air pollution

Eight out of nine areas monitored by community groups recording air pollution in London, breached EU limits for nitrogen dioxide (NO2) in the air. The UCL project found the highest level of NO2 in the areas was in Marylebone in central London.

The results are part of the social enterprise Mapping for Change’s Air Quality Monitoring project where community groups measured the amount of NO2 in July in areas of London including Marylebone, Soho, Walthamstow, Brentford, Haringey and Ham.

The highest reading came from Marylebone Road in central London, where they measured 145 micrograms of NO2 per cubic meter air (µg/m3). This is almost four times the EU’s legal limit of 40µg/m3. Shaftesbury Avenue in Soho was next, measuring at 119µg/m3. Continue reading

The air we breathe: nanoparticles and their role as a cardiovascular risk factor

The European Society of Cardiology hosted their Congress 2015 in London last month. The Congress is the world’s largest and most influential cardiovascular event.

the air we breatheA population-based approach is needed to tackle air pollution, which is now ranked ninth among the greatest modifiable risk factors for cardiovascular disease, according to conclusions at a Spotlight of the Congress Symposium yesterday.

Air pollution not only exacerbates existing heart conditions but even appears to play a part in their causation. The WHO estimated in 2012 that one in eight of total global deaths (around seven million each year) could be attributed to air pollution. The principal culprit appears to be fine nanoparticles known as particulate matter (PM) ≤2.5 μm in diameter (PM2.5) which occur in diesel and petrol exhaust.

David Newby from Edinburgh University said:

‘This ultrafine particulate matter is like a gas and can penetrate deeply into the lungs and reach the blood stream,’.
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London set to breathe easier with new emissions regulation

The Environmental Industries Commission (EIC) has welcomed a new London scheme to improve air quality in the capital, and calls for it to be implemented in other UK cities.

new emissions regulation

Construction sites in London are now required to start replacing or retrofitting with pollution controls machinery such as diggers, cranes, generators and bulldozers to ensure new emissions standards are met. Such machinery is currently the source of 15% of particulate matter pollution and 12% of the toxic gas nitrogen dioxide within London1.

With 9,500 people dying prematurely in London each year as a result of long term air pollution2, emissions regulation for construction machinery is key to ensuring clean air in London, improving the wellbeing of all Londoners. Continue reading