Air pollution 'four times' the legal limit in London - BikeBiz

Air pollution 'four times' the legal limit in London

Department for environment, food and rural affairs figures place all 50 most polluted areas in capital
Publish date:

On average, air pollution levels are up to four times the European legal limit, according to statistics released by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA).

A Sunday Times freedom of information request has revealed that the roads around Buckingham Palace are the country's most polluted, with all of the top 50 hotspots located within the capital. 152 micrograms of NO2 per cubic metre have been recorded, with the European Law permitting no more than 40 micrograms.

Diesel engine cars are thought to be the greatest source of the toxic fumes. As a result, certain older diesel engines have been banned in Berlin, Germany, something director of Clean Air, Simon Birkett has called for in the UK.

“The thought that hundreds of thousands or millions of tourists and Londoners in a year may be exposed to air pollution this high is deeply troubling,” Birkett told the Independent.

Believed to kill around 30,000 UK residents prematurely per year through respiratory complications, air pollution is second only to smoking as the most deadly public health issue.

Cyclists, however, could be at less risk than many may assume, according to a study on pollution and transport. Ben Barratt at the KCL tested the exposure to black carbon over a 24-hour period in London, using a cycle courier, an ambulance driver, a toddler, a pensioner, an office worker and a student as a test pool. The cyclist, depsite being out in the open air perhaps the longest, came second lowest on the exposure test, with the ambulance driver claiming top spot.

Image placeholder title

Featured Jobs

the cycle hub

Showroom Manager

The Cycle Hub I Dubai, United Arab Emirates I Competitive Package & Bonus I Date Published Tuesday 26th June 2018

Giant St Paul Logo

Bike Fitter / Sales Person

Giant St Pauls I City of London I Salary: Negotiable Dependent on Experience I Date Published Thursday 21st June 2018


Bike Technician

Chain Reaction Cycles I Ballyclare I Competitive Salary & Benefits Package I Date Published Monday 2nd July 2018


Brand Content Writer

Canyon Bicycles GmbH I Koblenz, Germany I Salary: Up to €38,000 I Date Published Tuesday 3rd July 2018


Retail Sales Advisor

Chain Reaction Cycles I Belfast I Competitive Salary & Benefits Package I Date Published Monday 2nd July 2018