Air Pollution

Meeting: 
MQT on 2014-12-17
Session date: 
December 17, 2014
Reference: 
2014/5849
Question By: 
Navin Shah
Organisation: 
Labour Group
Asked Of: 
The Mayor
Category: 

Question

The Sunday Times reported that on the Committee on the Medical Effects of Air Pollutants, an official advisory body, will publish a report next year showing that the premature death toll caused by road traffic pollution is around twice as high as originally thought. The official death toll for air pollution in the UK is currently 29,000, but this does not take into account levels of the gas nitrogen dioxide, which is mainly emitted by diesel engines whose deadly effects are not included in the existing official count. Given your role in relation to Environment in London, will you work with the government to establish proposals to tackle air pollution in London?

Answer

Answer for Air Pollution

Answer for Air Pollution

Answered By: 
The Mayor

Improving London's air quality has been a priority for me since I was first elected Mayor. In my first term I implemented ambitious proposals to tighten the emission standards for the Low Emission Zone, clean up the bus fleet and retire the oldest taxis. More than 400,000 buildings have been retrofitted, I have introduce the "air quality neutral" requirement into the London Plan and introduced new requirements for construction equipment to meet tough emission standards. Since 2008 these measures have reduced emissions of NOx by 20 per cent, particulate matter by 15% and have halved the number of Londoners living in areas exceeding EU legal limits for nitrogen dioxide (NO2).

However, I accept that more needs to be done which is why I have developed proposals for the world's first Ultra Low Emission Zone. This will be a game changer for the capital's air quality, halving central London's transport emissions and taking us two-thirds of the way to meeting EU legal limits for NO2.

This summer I published my Air Quality Manifesto setting out a route map to delivering full compliance across London with NO2 legal limits by 2020. This will require further action at national and European level and my team and I regularly raise this with our counterparts in Government.