Basingstoke MP Maria Miller recently attended the launch in Parliament of the Clean Air Parents’ Network. This new campaign group has been formed by parents across the country, in partnership with the British Lung Foundation and environmental law organisation Client Earth, to highlight the damage air pollution causes to children’s health, and campaign for a programme of actions to recognise and reduce air pollution around schools, nurseries and playgrounds.
The Clean Air Parents’ Network is calling for a range of practical actions, including monitoring of air quality around schools and nurseries in areas of high air pollution, banning the building of new schools and nurseries in pollution hotspots, and traffic exclusion zones around schools and nurseries.
Maria said: “I am pleased to be involved with this new campaign, to help raise awareness of air pollution around schools and nurseries and encourage taking practical steps to address this. National and local government have an important role to play, and some local authorities, including Hampshire, are already taking steps to address this.”
“People usually think of air pollution as a problem mainly for our cities and industrial areas. But it can occur anywhere, and indeed in Basingstoke we have some localised areas of heightened air pollution, primarily due to road traffic. I would urge any parents and carers in Basingstoke who may be concerned about this to look at the Clean Air Parents Network and consider signing up to the campaign.”
Maria added: “As well as these measures, all of us can take steps ourselves to help to reduce air pollution, by using public transport, or walking or cycling, as an alternative to our cars, and turning off our engines when the car is stationary.”