Network Updates / London, United Kingdom / 2018-01-01

London at the vanguard of city action on air pollution:
Erik Solheim

#BreatheLife city London, facing serious health impacts of pollution, doubles down on pollution

London, United Kingdom
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Facing serious impacts of air pollution, including those to the health of unborn babies’, the city of London is taking bold action to meet its ambitious target under the BreatheLife Campaign.

This places it at the vanguard of a growing coalition of cities seeking to combat the devastating impact that air pollution has on our health, our economies and our environment, says UN Environment Chief Erik Solheim.

London’s mayor Sadiq Khan has doubled the amount of money the city will spend on tackling smog. He has plans to retrofit 5,000 of the city’s older buses with anti-pollution technology and introduce new hybrid and electric buses to further cut emissions. Khan aims to phase out diesel taxis and invest in electric charging ports across the city as part of plans to introduce an ultra-low-emission zone in central London. The city has also imposed a toxicity charge on the most polluting vehicles plying its roads and has previously introduced a congestion charge that was successful in cutting the number of large polluting vehicles.

London’s target is to achieve the World Health Organisation’s Air Quality Guideline Goals by 2030, the first capital city in the world to commit to this target as part of its pledge to the BreatheLife Campaign, led by WHO, UN Environment and the Climate and Clean Air coalition.

Read Erik Solheim’s full commentary on the UN Environment website, here.