The Times view on the cost of air pollution

Flood defences beside the Connswater River in east Belfast

Flood threat to 45,000 Northern Ireland properties

The government has pledged to bring pollution down from dangerously high levels for millions of United Kingdom citizens within six years.

The days of polluting log burners and open-fire fuels are numbered, the environment secretary has said as he outlines an "ambitious strategy" to tackle air pollution.

Two-thirds of the United Kingdom population, or about 43 million people, now live in these high risk areas, according to the World Health Organisation recommended limit, which the government is adopting today as part of its manifesto.

The government has also proposed a ban households burning coal and wet wood, which produces more smoke and less energy than dry wood - and giving extra powers to local authorities to enforce the rules.

It's the biggest creator of the gas ammonia because of slurry and other rotting farm waste and fertiliser.

Mr Gove will say: "Air pollution continues to shorten lives, harm our children and reduce quality of life.' He added that while it may conjure 'images of traffic jams and exhaust fumes, transport is only one part of the story". "We must take strong, urgent action", said Environment Secretary Michael Gove.

Under the new strategy the government will provide farmers with support to invest in infrastructure and equipment to reduce emissions and will work with industry to encourage low emission, holistic farming techniques.

New evidence suggests her death could be linked to unlawful levels of air pollution.

"However, we're disappointed that it doesn't include a clear commitment to adopt the World Health Organization limits for particulate matter pollution in the upcoming Environment Bill".

"Our current legal limits are twice as high as WHO recommendations, and too many people are still exposed to unsafe air pollution levels which puts the lung health of all of us at risk". Meanwhile, two thirds of the United Kingdom population live in areas above that limit, while the average level in central London is 15.2.

"I applaud the UK's Clean Air Strategy, which will not only help to protect the health of millions of people, but is also an example for the rest of the world to follow", said WHO director general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

Altre Notizie