This Government is doing nothing to improve our air quality in Chingford &Woodford Green

26 April, 2017

Theresa May’s snap election has hit her government’s plans for a diesel car scrappage scheme, where drivers who own older, polluting vehicles would have been offered £2,000 to trade in their cars. Ministers had also been preparing plans to reduce air pollution in seven cities which would have seen diesel car drivers paying daily charges or being even banned during peak hours

These plans have now been shelved at a time when motorists are hurrying to beat the new increases to vehicle excise duty, contributing to an increase in car sales in March – including diesel cars.

The Waltham Forest Guardian reported last year that an independent investigation carried out by University College London (UCL) found that air pollution across Waltham Forest was twice the EU limit.

This will come as no surprise to local residents, who are all too aware of the effects of pollution and congested roads in Chingford and Woodford Green. The North Circular, which runs through South Woodford, has been called a ‘silent killer’ for those living near it.

Some of the poorest air quality levels in Waltham Forest are adjacent to the busiest roads in the borough. The level crossing in Highams Park, Station Road and Chingford Mount are all heavily polluted areas. Cars, particularly diesel vehicles, are a key source of Nitrogen Dioxide which is linked to a range of respiratory illnesse
s.
The Chingford Times has previously written about the deeply worrying evidence from the British Lung Foundation that people living in Waltham Forest have the second highest rate of lung cancer, asthma and other lung diseases in London.

Waltham Forest Council has consistently lobbied Transport for London to bring forward radical air quality improvement schemes and proposals, while the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan has proposed extending the Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) to the North Circular Road and the South Circular Road.

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