Poor Air Quality in London Continues

Sixty Years after the Great Smog

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London-wide Assembly Members

Darren Johnson (Green)

Murad Qureshi (Labour)

Clean Air in London

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On the occasion of the anniversary of the Great Smog, Murad Quereshi, a London-wide Labour Assembly Member sent the following to the Mayor of London:

Last week saw the 60th anniversary of the Great Smog that struck London in 1952, shortly after the Clean Air Act was passed which led to large improvements in air quality in London. The Great Smog killed over 4,000 in less than a week. Whilst we don't suffer from 'Pea-soupers' that blot out the sky, we do still suffer from air pollution that is invisible to the naked eye.

This invisible pollution kills over 4,000 Londoners each year and greatly exacerbates health problems for people who suffer from breathing difficulties. In 2010, 7.10 per cent of deaths in Hounslow were attributed to poor air quality. We require urgent action to tackle this silent killer.

The Mayor of London could take significant steps to reduce pollution in London, he could retrofit London's 8,500 buses to make them less polluting and work even harder to encourage people to use public transport and get out of their cars. Instead, Boris is taking London in the opposite direction. This week he confirmed fares will continue to rise above inflation for a decade, this follows 5 years of inflation-busting fare rises since he became Mayor in 2008. It is time the Mayor adopted a more comprehensive strategy for tackling air pollution and avoiding a continuous repeat of the tragedy that struck London in 1952.


December 12, 2012