Pollution levels in Putney High Street breach legal limit again just days into 2014
Pollution levels have already exceeded the yearly Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) quota in Putney, a mirror of the past two years.
In 2012 and 2013 the levels of the pollutant breached the yearly quota within three days of the new year.
Results from the air monitoring equipment show there have been 24 exceedances of NO2 to date, breaching the annual permitted legal limit of 18.
The results are slightly lower than last year, which had 55 exceedances on the same date.
However, data shows there has been a 49 per cent decrease in the number of breaches in 2013 compared to 2012.
Transport for London (TfL) began a programme to replace buses travelling down the high street with cleaner hybrid models.
Campaigners have said more work needs to be done to stop the high levels of NO2, known to cause asthma, other respiratory conditions and heart disease
Jonathan Callaway, of the Putney Society, said the amenity group are urging to the council to impose a tighter stopping regime for delivery lorries.
He said: "We had hoped that the new hybrid buses slowly being introduced would make a difference but it seems not really, at least as yet.
"The Putney Society continues to campaign for improved air quality and we plan to conduct another survey of our own when we can get hold of the necessary equipment.
"We would also urge the Mayor of London to consider imposing yet tighter limits in London’s Low Emission Zone, at least for those areas where problems are known to be most acute.
"Action to combat the ever increasing use of diesel engines in motor vehicles of all sizes may be the only way to reduce NO2 emissions as these engines are a key source of this dangerous pollutant."
The closure of Putney Bridge for building works planned for later this year is expected to reduce the levels of traffic.
Simon Birkett, of the Campaign for Clean Air in London, said: "At its simplest, in public health terms,‘invisible air pollution is where smoking was 30 years ago in terms of the scale and certainty of the risks and the lack of public understanding of them.
"It is shocking the Mayor is doing so little to reduce levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2), a toxic gas, near our busiest streets.
"Sixteen monitoring sites in London breached the NO2 hourly limit value last year and dozens breached the annual limit in legislation since 1999 to be complied with by 2010."
Councillor Jonathan Cook, cabinet member for the environment, said: "We continue to work on several fronts to accelerate the rate of improvement including revising road and parking layouts and working with businesses to reduce the impacts of delivery traffic.
"We also promote and invest in a range of alternative transport options to help our residents and businesses switch from cars to less polluting modes of travel.
"This includes an extension of the cycle hire scheme which now covers Putney, new electric vehicle infrastructure and a vastly improved riverbus services from Putney Pier."
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