Clean Air Day 2017

Posted on: 15th June 2017

Our Council is running a number of projects to improve air quality in Bishop's Stortford. Levels of pollution here are particularly high, both because of the airport and because of the tendency to drive cars in/through a town that was built for carts, where buildings trap polluted air, particularly from diesel engines. NO2 readings are often double the legal values (40 mg/m3) with Hockerill lights being a major problem area.. The Council is promoting an Anti-idling Awareness Campaign, "Turn Your Key – Be Idle Free”, which is our Thursday thought for June 15th.  The aim is to raise awareness and support National Clean Air Day on June 15th.  

Hertfordshire drivers are being urged to “Turn your key, Be Idle Free,” and not to leave their cars idling or “ticking over,” especially near schools. East Herts Council, who is leading the initiative, together with Herts County Council is running a #KeepItClean campaign throughout June.

Studies show that air pollution can slow the development of children’s lungs leading to lifelong consequences. It’s estimated that air pollution is linked to the equivalent of 40,000 premature deaths each year in the UK and we can all make small changes to improve our air quality.

As well as turning off car engines whilst stationary or in stationary traffic, drivers might consider car sharing, minimising or better organising car journeys, avoiding the use of diesel cars especially for shorter journeys and think about using electric or hybrid vehicles in the future.

On June 15th children from at least 13 primary schools in East Herts, as well as 37 others across the county, have already indicated their support for the campaign, and will be getting involved by walking to school and wearing something green. They’re writing personal pledges on paper clouds and asking their parents to turn off their engines whilst waiting or better still, leave the car at home and walk or use public transport instead. The campaign is also being promoted via leaflets in libraries throughout Hertfordshire and on screens in 19 GP surgeries in the East and North Herts Clinical Commissioning Group area.

In addition East Herts is launching a radio campaign on Bob FM and Heart Harlow starting June 9 to promote Clean Air Day itself along with a follow-up ad which will be aired from 15-22 June. For more information follow @EastHerts #KeepItClean on twitter, for tips to help cut air pollution or visit www.eastherts.gov.uk/CleanAirDay