Greater Manchester is developing a Clean Air Plan (opens in a new tab) to tackle harmful and illegally high levels of roadside air pollution across the city-region. We need to clean up the air we all breathe. Dirty air damages our health and plays a part in thousands of deaths every year. In towns and cities, road vehicles are the main source of air pollution. But we can be affected by poor indoor air quality too.
Everyone is at risk. Air pollution harms our health at every stage of life and is even linked to early deaths. In fact, the effects can start as early a baby’s first few weeks in the womb. The most vulnerable people in society are hit hardest – children, older people and those already in poor health.
When you’re out and about you can be breathing in dirty air without even knowing it. And you might be adding to the problem by the way you travel.
But there are plenty of ways you and your organisation can help reduce air pollution. A few simple changes could help protect you, your families and others.
The single biggest thing we can do is drive less. Choosing to make more journeys on foot or by bike will also improve your health. There are many things that you could do to keep the levels of air pollution as low as they were at the height of the COVID-19 lockdown.
- Put in place green business travel options for all employees and volunteers
- Implement Cycle to Work (opens in a new tab) and salary sacrifice (opens in a new tab) for Ultra Low Emission Vehicles (ULEV) schemes for your staff
- Install cycle racks at your work place, Electric Vehicle charging points and transition your fleet to ULEV
- Encourage home working and digital solutions – use online communication, webinars and video conferencing
- Get involved in physical exercise programmes with Greater Manchester Moving (opens in a new tab)
For more information and top tips, visit Clean Air Greater Manchester (opens in a new tab)
There’s also a schools toolkit (opens in a new tab) to help your school take action against air pollution, so that pupils and everyone else can breathe cleaner air. The free toolkit combines curriculum-linked lesson plans and resources with the latest scientific understanding and campaign tools. It will help your school raise awareness of air pollution and get teachers, parents and pupils involved in practical ways to improve the local air.