Do greenways boost air quality? London study set to find out

Traffic-free cycle paths and quieter roads will be put to the test from next week
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Next week a study monitoring air quality on Greenways in London will get underway.

Timed to coincide with World Environmental Health Day on Monday September 26th, the study will see air quality monitoring boxes placed along walking and cycling routes on traffic-free paths or quieter roads – or greenways – across London. Led by Sustrans, the study will run a month, at which point the boxes will be collected and analysed.

Children are more vulnerable to the effects of air pollution than adults. The development of greenways could be most beneficial for encouraging young people to make more active journeys, which fits in with Sustrans' Free Range Kids campaign launched earlier this year.

Sustrans’ Policy Advisor in London Eleanor Besley explained the background asoning behind the study: “We often talk about the potential for Greenways to improve people’s health by encouraging them to be more active by walking and cycling more, but this study could also show that greenway users are less exposed to pollution and therefore less at risk from the illnesses that pollution can cause. 

“The further development of London Greenways should be a central part of efforts to improve the choices available to people who want to walk and cycle more.”

For the study Sustrans is partnering the Campaign for Clean Air in London, Mapping for Change, the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, Healthy Air UK, Environmental Protection UK and AEA.

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