Friday, January 16, 2009

Green MEP Jean Lambert highlights the air quality issue with regard to Heathrow

After some ‘shall I shan’t I – will I won’t I’ entertainment, the government have gone down the runway for a third runway at Heathrow airport. Although the writing was on the control tower wall some time ago, a clear indication of the mindset of the Labour government was revealed back in October by Green MEP Jean Lambert. She pointed out that the government was trying to delay meeting EU air quality standards for 2010 by five years specifically to avoid the growth of Heathrow airport. Below is what she said at the time:

"I am appalled by the Government’s actions on this issue. Heathrow faces massive opposition from residents and it is clear that the Government will also fail to meet EU targets if it goes ahead. This development should be scrapped.

"EU air quality standards were set to protect the health of citizens and prevent the development and aggravation of breathing problems, such as asthma and bronchitis. But the UK government has been failing on their commitments to adhering to these basic standards for many years.

"Now it is apparent that the Government is aware that Heathrow expansion will mean they will fail to meet future targets, yet they are putting the interests of the aviation industry before the health of ordinary Londoners.

"How can they justify putting people's long-term health at risk in this way? Their attitude is scandalous."

It is estimated that over 1000 people die prematurely and a further 1000 are hospitalized every year in London as a result of air pollution.

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1 comment:

stan prokop said...

London air quality is much worse than everyone thinks.Recent research shows the death toll and illnesses should be revised upwards by about 200%.In fact most deaths are caused by sudden heart attacks in those aged over 45,although lung problems in young and old cause much pain, distress and heartache.There is a timelag before lung problems present to hospital.The problem of brain injury in the young has also been highlighted in severely polluted Mexico City.WHO safe levels are not being met (in London or the EU) by a big and dangerous margin.

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