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Michael Gove declares war on scented candles and wood-burning stoves in bid to reduce 36,000 deaths a year caused by toxic air

Woodburning stoves, bonfires and household cleaning products are being targeted in a major crackdown on pollution.
The Clean Air Strategy, which will be launched today, aims to reduce the estimated 36,000 annual deaths blamed on breathing toxic air.
The Government said it would become the first major economy to adopt tough World Health Organisation standards.
Proposals include a ban on the most polluting fuels – such as domestic coal – and ensuring only the cleanest stoves are sold. 
The Clean Air Strategy, which will be launched today, aims to reduce the estimated 36,000 annual deaths blamed on breathing toxic air
The Clean Air Strategy, which will be launched today, aims to reduce the estimated 36,000 annual deaths blamed on breathing toxic air
Woodburning stoves and open fires are now the biggest source of outdoor particulate emissions – 38 per cent, compared with 16 per cent from industrial processes, and 12 per cent from road transport.
Much of the strategy will involve advice to families such as to haver fewer bonfires and buy in bulk to reduce the number of deliveries by van.
Manufacturers will be told to reduce emissions from scented candles, carpets, laminate flooring and glues. These add to particulate pollution and can break down to create toxic gases.
Local councils will be given more powers in high pollution areas while ports will have to reduce pollution from shipping. Laws preventing cars from idling may be tightened.
Woodburning stoves and open fires are now the biggest source of outdoor particulate emissions
Woodburning stoves and open fires are now the biggest source of outdoor particulate emissions
Environment Secretary Michael Gove said the Government wanted to reduce particulate emissions by 30 per cent by 2020, and by 46 per cent by 2030. He said tackling air pollution would save £5.3billion a year from 2030.
'The evidence is clear,' he added. 'While air quality has improved significantly in recent years, air pollution continues to shorten lives, harm our children and reduce quality of life.
'While air pollution may conjure images of traffic jams and exhaust fumes, transport is only one part of the story and the new strategy sets out the important role all of us – across all sectors of work and society – can play in reducing emissions and cleaning up our air to protect our health.'Health Secretary Matt Hancock said air pollution was the single greatest environmental threat to human health.
He added: 'Breathing dirty air is associated with a host of health problems, from asthma to cardiovascular disease and lung cancer, and all too often it is the most vulnerable – children, older people and those from poorer backgrounds – who are hit hardest. In short: clean air helps you live longer.'
The strategy calls for a voluntary labelling scheme to warn consumers against the most polluting products. It says all diesel trains will be banned by 2040 and the sale of diesel and petrol vehicles will be phased out by the same point.
But green groups warned last night that too little was being done to tackle pollution from road transport.
Jenny Bates of Friends of the Earth said: 'If the Government is serious about protecting our health, and the health of the planet, it must scrap new road building plans which would add to the problem, and phase out petrol and diesel vehicles faster.'
Morten Thaysen of Greenpeace UK said: 'The Government is saying all the right things about the huge cost in human lives, and money, which our appalling air quality imposes, and gives an important signal about tighter long-term targets.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said air pollution was the single greatest environmental threat to human health (file photo)
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said air pollution was the single greatest environmental threat to human health (file photo)
'But there seems to be a bit of a disconnect between this recognition of the urgency of the problem and the extremely relaxed approach to solving it. 
'Even after recognising the seriousness of the air pollution crisis the Government is proposing nothing new to tackle pollution from road transport.'
Professor Alastair Lewis of the University of York said: 'The wide range of simultaneous actions being proposed, and sectors and pollutants being targeted, is a reflection that further improving air quality in the UK is getting harder and harder, now the big industrial and combustion sources are under control.'

1 comment:

  1. 36,000, sure https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YHdz8cwnKsY

    ReplyDelete