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  • The mist on Brighton beach,August 8, 2003.

    The mist on Brighton beach,August 8, 2003. | Photo: EFE

Published 7 September 2020
Opinion

Nitrogen dioxide (NO2) a toxic gas that affects the human respiratory system, is the main contaminating element. About 2.2 million tons of NO2 from motor vehicles, power stations, and from domestic or industrial sources, airs in the U.K. every year. 

About 33 million people in England reside in highly polluted air areas, according to Shadow Secretary for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Luke Pollard.

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“It’s simply unacceptable that nearly 60 percent of England’s population – including more than half our children and millions of over-65s – suffer illegally high air pollution. We know that sustained filthy air corresponds to a higher COVID death rate,” Pollard said.

Air pollution has a severe impact on economically disadvantaged people, who also belong to minorities and live in underprivileged areas. This factor could lead to a rise in COVID-19 deaths among black, Asian, and other ethnic communities.

London, Greenwich, Hackney, Islington, Brent, Hammersmith, Fulham, Haringey, and Lambeth registered air contamination levels over legal rates.

“People have a right to breathe good quality, clean air regardless of where they live. Ministers could and should act now to achieve this by putting the World Health Organization air-quality limits into law,” Pollard added.

Nitrogen dioxide (NO2), a toxic gas that affects the human respiratory system, is the main contaminating element. About 2.2 million tons of NO2 from motor vehicles, power stations, and from domestic or industrial sources airs in the U.K. every year. 

According to the World Health Organization, over seven million people die worldwide each year due to air pollution-related diseases. 

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