Mums call for London to become ‘diesel-free city’ to protect children as toxic air hotspots revealed


llegal levels of toxic air have been detected at 15 key sites across London, it was revealed today.

Mums for Lungs, the parents’ campaign group, said the high levels of nitrogen dioxide were recorded last year despite the pandemic causing an initial dramatic fall in road traffic.

Written on stone: the stencilled warnings about toxic air

/ CMT/Mums for Lungs

Stencilled warning signs alerting Londoners to the dangerous levels of NO2 have been drawn on pavements in each of the locations.

The highest readings were in Brixton Road in Lambeth (60mg/m3), Putney High Street (58) and Hanger Lane (51). The legal level is 40.

Two of the 15 sites – Walbrook Wharf and Strand – are inside the central London Ulez, and eight will fall within the widened zone.

Five are in outer London or on the outer edge of the new boundary, such as Ikea at Brent and Crooked Billet in Waltham Forest, and roads in Kingston and Morden.

The 15 toxic air hotspots in London

/ EDF/Mums for Lungs

The pollution data has been gathered by Environmental Defense Fund Europe (EDF Europe) from air pollution monitors across the city.

It is estimated that about two-thirds of the NO2 pollution at these locations came from diesel vehicles, such as cars, taxis, vans and heavy goods vehicles.


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