air pollution caused by grown-ups #shamethegovernment
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The Supreme Court was very clear in its ruling against the government which ordered ministers to come up with a plan to bring air pollution down within legal limits as soon as possible. That was in 2015! Mr Gove, you are now in charge of the environment and the air our children are breathing in.
Mr Khan, you as the mayor of London issues the highest pollution warning and most children don't even know about it and even if they do, they have no choice. Adults are deciding for them. They are still sent outside to play in school playgrounds and sports fields. Some schools advised asthmatic children to make sure they bring their inhalers. Some schools are starting to install pollution filters.
We put seat belts on our children before driving a car. We put helmets on their heads to ride a bike. There is a smoking ban in cars with children, we have smoking bans in hospitals. Why are we then harming our children knowingly with toxic air pollution on a daily basis?
We need a national air pollution warning system, contacting on a daily basis, all schools and nurseries to protect the future generation.
Mr Khan, as the mayor of London your are taking some action, but your plans will take years to show results. Much more can be done to force and incentivise change, NOW!
NOW you can replace the bus fleet instead of planning on buying non diesel buses from 2018. NOW you can start imposing car idling penalty notices. NOW you can make sure all vehicles need to pass strict MOT if necessary introduce a London MOT. Planning bike routes need to be coordinated with other road closures. Current HS2 plans add to pollution for the next 10 years and are completely inadequate. During building work create traffic free zones around schools and pedestrian areas only. How can the Zoo sign off a lorry car park contract for 600 pollution lorries in and out a day for HS2 construction. How can you force kids to take in the extra pollution of 1200 lorries a day past their playground. How can you accept that kids need to stay in schools and breathe only filtered air, keeping windows shut!
Mrs May, your government on the other hand, is hiding behind mysterious plans that change nothing for the foreseeable future. Climate change is on the back burner and you continue David Cameron's policy of 'if we ignore it long enough it might go away'! Plans to make a significant impact on our climate are constantly shelved and dragged into the open under duress and court enforcements. They continue to be insufficient! The minister for transport need to work hand in hand with the minister for the environment and not just the minister for future trade deals!
Our children cannot wait any more. They are grown-ups with destroyed lungs by the time we get our act together. They deserve a government taking the lead and bringing down the number of all citizens who need inhalers to cope with air pollution. They deserve mayors who take unpopular decisions to force change but also a government that helps their citizens financially, be it through tax breaks or fully financed implementation schemes to pull it off together. Paying for the replacement of an entire bus and taxi fleet costs less than caring for NHS lung patients who are only 2 years old now.
Our children deserve parents, uncles, neighbours, grandmothers, teachers, in fact all grown ups, who take care of the environment and who take care of them, the most precious asset of this nation.
Our children want to know what all grown-ups are going to do to address this terrible and inexcusable problem - NOW!
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