Professor Stephen Holgate, the leading air pollution academic, Defra and Public Health England have thrown their weight behind a new online ‘hub’ that for the first time pulls together easily accessible public information on air pollution.
The Clean Air Hub, launched as part of the Clean Air Day air pollution campaign, is designed as a comprehensive one-stop shop that addresses gaps in public understanding of air pollution.
The Hub provides easy guidance on the sources of air pollution and simple ways to reduce it in the home and outdoors. There’s also information on how air pollution affects people’s health and what they can do to protect themselves.
‘The Clean Air Hub could not have come sooner – the need for something like this has been glaringly obvious to all of us working on air pollution. The risks to our health from air pollution cannot be understated, so making people aware of this and the simple things they can do to protect themselves, is an important part of solving this public health crisis.’
PROFESSOR STEPHEN HOLGATE
Special Advisor to the Royal College of Physicians on Air Quality
The air pollution health risk
The initiative comes on the heels of recent Opinium research, commissioned for Global Action Plan’s Clean Air Public Insights Tracker, that reveals that 94% of the public think that reducing air pollution should be a priority for the UK, but only 16% knew where to go to for advice on air pollution.
76% of those surveyed said that they would find more public information campaigns on air pollution helpful, a higher number than for healthy eating (70%), smoking (57%), physical activity (68%) or sexual health (59%).
Air pollution is the largest environmental health risk we face today, according to the World Health Organisation, and in the UK is responsible for up to 36,000 deaths.
Outdoor sources of air pollution include road transport, energy generation, industry, domestic fires and agriculture. Indoor sources include heating and cooking, plus fumes from DIY, cleaning and personal care products.