4,000 sign 'Let Bristol breathe' petition

November 24 2016

The campaign to improve the quality of air in central Bristol, something which particularly affects residents of Bishopston, Cotham and Redland, took a step forward this month when a petition of over 4,000 signatures was presented to the council calling for tougher action on pollution

let bristol

The campaign to improve the quality of air in central Bristol, something which particularly affects residents of Bishopston, Cotham and Redland, took a step forward this month when a petition of over 4,000 signatures was presented to the council calling for tougher action on pollution.

A spokeswoman for the campaign, Deb Joffe, said: “We are highlighting the level of support for policies that let Bristol breathe. Clean air isn’t a luxury, it’s a basic human need.”

Jane Stevenson, who started the petition, said: “People are clearly passionate about this. Air pollution can cause serious damage to people's health and it is now estimated that at least 300 people a year in Bristol die from its effects. 

"The Government originally blocked Bristol from having a Clean Air Zone and it is now time for Bristol's Mayor to stand up and demand that this is reversed.”

Feedback on a survey showed that half of all people in inner Bristol believe that air pollution is affecting their health. The Green party have a plan which calls for measures such as working with the taxi and bus fleets in Bristol, stopping the dirtiest cars coming into the city centre, encouraging more cycling and walking and to put an end to any future dirty diesel run generators in the city. 

Redland councillor  Martin Fodor said:  “We’re delighted that following many years of campaigning about air pollution and health there’s some sign of progress. This is a life or death issue and Gloucester Rd is one of the polluted streets in the city.

“That’s why we’re delighted that after Greens tabled a motion to the council on November 8 we got all party agreement to call on the Mayor to put in place a clean air zone. We’ve also got over 4,000 signatures to a petition for action, which means there can be a full debate in council. 

“Our party co-leader, Caroline Lucas MP visited Gloucester Rd in October to help find out what residents think and there was widespread support for several measures as part of a clean air zone.  My fellow Redland councillor, Fi Hance, is on the Mayoral air quality group looking at ways to improve the situation in Bristol and we’ll keep residents informed when there’s news. 

“If the 300 extra deaths a year had been from accidents or some other cause then something would have been done by now – this time let’s see real steps being taken to get something done that will save lives!”