Boris told to urgently alleviate air pollution threat to children

�Sixteen schools and nurseries in Havering are too close to London’s busiest roads, said a local Green Party politician.

Haroon Saad, the Green Party’s London Assembly candidate for Havering and Redbridge, said the schools were within 150 metres of the city’s busiest roads, according to statistics uncovered last week.

He has since helped launch a petition calling on London Mayor Boris Johnson and local authorities to do more to combat air pollution.

The petition, which is being backed by Green Party candidates across London, asks Mr Johnson and councils “to reduce urgently air pollution on main roads near schools to protect the health of children”.

Premature deaths


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It says that 37 schools and nurseries in Redbridge and 16 in Havering lie within the roads that carry more than 10,000 vehicles a day.

Mr Saad said studies had shown that air pollution causes more than 4,200 premature deaths a year in London and can lead to other serious illnesses.

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He added that since 2005, London has been required by law to have no more than a maximum annual quota of “bad air days”. In 2011, this quota had been exceeded by Easter.

Mr Saad said: “Air pollution is the single greatest environmental threat to our health. It is seen as problem that we cannot control, but this is not the case. We need the mayor to impose stricter standards, sensible regulations and develop more integrated transport solutions.”

The petition is expected to be presented to City Hall in the new year.

n It can be found at www.petitionbuzz.com/petitions/dirtyboris

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