One in 20 deaths in Greater Manchester caused by air pollution – local councils must act, say Green Party

The Green Party are calling for action after Public Health England revealed 1,346 people died from air pollution in Greater Manchester in 2010.

Green peer Baroness Jones of Moulsecoomb and Manchester-based European election candidate Laura Bannister are staging a protest today to against the government for failing to tackle issue of air pollution.

Earlier this year the European Commission launched legal proceedings against the UK, and Greater Manchester is currently breaking the safe limits on air pollution set by the European Union.

Public Health England’s report estimates that in the North West 3427 deaths in 2010 (5.1% of all deaths) were attributable to air pollution.

Green Party European election hopeful Laura Bannister said: “With one in twenty deaths in Manchester caused by air pollution it is abundantly clear that bold action from local councils is needed.

“We need more public transport options and safer streets for cyclists and pedestrians to increase the numbers of people cycling and walking in our city.”

In inner Manchester alone, there were 219 people who died. Across the UK it is estimated that 25,002 people died because of air pollution in 2010.

Baroness Jones said: “These shocking new statistics, which show that hundreds of people in Manchester, and thousands of people across the UK, are dying because of air pollution, urgent action is needed to clean up our air.

“Young children, those who have asthma and elderly people are all at greater risk of health problems caused by air pollution. We can’t allow this invisible public health crisis to continue.

“Now that these statistics have revealed the high numbers of deaths caused by air pollution, it is time for government ministers and local councils in Greater Manchester to take this issue seriously and respond with urgent action to protect people’s health.”

image courtesy of Alfred Palmer, with thanks.

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