Air quality: failure to act 'is costing lives in our city'
BRISTOL City Council has released new suggestions and timescales for dealing with the city’s air pollution crisis.
These would see a full outline business plan sent to the Government at the end of December, a full year after the original deadline for Bristol to produce an air quality plan.
The delay in acting over air quality has been condemned by the Green Party.
Bishopston councillor Eleanor Combley, leader of the Green group on the council, said: “More evidence of the stark health impacts of air pollution is discovered every few months. Recently it emerged that poor air quality is linked to a greater risk of psychosis in teenagers and last month research suggested that toxic air may be responsible for twice as many deaths as previously thought, making it deadlier than smoking.
“So it is deeply depressing that in the face of this public health crisis – responsible for an estimated 300 deaths per year in Bristol – Bristol’s Labour administration is going back to the drawing board once again instead of taking the bold action needed to save lives.
"Under their current plans there’s no chance of any real action being taken until well into 2020.
"As well as a public health emergency, this is an equalities issue. People in some of the poorest parts of the city, in wards like Lawrence Hill, not only suffer the most from air pollution but are also less likely to own cars than wealthier residents.
“Let’s be clear – these further delays are costing lives.
"The Mayor should release the expensive research the council commissioned into Clean Air options so Bristolians can see on what basis he has refused to act, and how much longer it will take us to bring air quality levels down under his new proposals.
"Air pollution is a public health crisis and the Mayor needs to face up to his duty to take decisive action.”
Clean air day plans for Bishopston: Page 7