Cold weather, high traffic, and the use of wood-burning stoves creates air pollution alerts in London these days.
Data presented by King’s College London show that areas such as Camden, Westminster and the City of London are the most affected.
Pollution reached 10 out of 10 on the air pollution index for these areas.
Other areas of London are not so affected by pollution, but they are rated seven of higher, on the same index of air pollution levels.
Worse is the fact that the forecast for today (Tuesday, January 24th), shows that air pollution levels in London are still at very high levels, and they can spread across over the villages that surround the capital.
London’s Mayor, Sadiq Khan, stated among others the following: “Today, the shameful state of London’s toxic air made him to trigger the first ‘very high’ air pollution alert that is meant to alert anyone (from the most vulnerable to the physically fit) that they need to take precautions to protect themselves from the dirty air of London”.
Beside the typical air pollution created every winter by the people that are using stoves to burn wood or coal for heating, the increased traffic in the city due to the bad weather conditions generates more emissions.
Data presented by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs are showing that by Monday evening, other regions of the UK such as the southwest, the southeast, the east Midlands and Northern Ireland, were rated as having high or very high levels of air pollution.
In addition, parts of Bristol, Belfast and Nottingham, were rated as having high levels of PM2.5 particulates in the air.
Timothy Baker, principal air quality analyst at the environmental research group King’s College London, said that the peak level of pollution that was registered Sunday night, was the highest level of air pollution reached since April 2011.
Baker stated further that the high level of air pollution in London this weekend is due to the chilly weather and the lack of wind, which enabled the accumulation of pollutants generated by traffic and wood burning.
Traffic and the use of wood-burning stoves are the only sources of pollution in the city?
Cold weather and the lack of wind caused problems with air pollution in other regions of the UK and also in some countries of the EU.
Coal is not the main fuel used in Europe for heating, so the visibility was reduced to roughly 330 feet (100 meters) in the days with pollution alerts.
The measures imposed to protect the population by the high level of air pollution in the city have included reducing outdoor activity for the kids under five in some schools, and the pedestrians were advised to use side roads to reach their destinations.
As a general idea, reducing physical exertion was the main advice for the entire population of the city.
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