Hounslow Air Quality Summit
Today, Tuesday the 26th. of February 2019, it was 18C, sunny and beautiful day in London. I did not have a winter jacket on. Wonderful, but SCARY, because we know that the climate is changing. The words that we really should be concerned about “climate change”.
Today I have attended the “Hounslow Air quality summit” at the Holiday Inn Hotel, in Brentford, where they talked about air pollution, emission of carbon dioxide through “traffic” (cars, underground trains, buses and airplanes). The city of London is actively working on action plans to reduce the gases that impact our daily life and our health in general.
Some of you know, how I am contributing to the “green” economy by trying to reduce the consumption or use of “plastic”, (which by the way, I must say that it is extremely difficult, confusing and meanwhile it feels like a commitment with our environment. ) Everything is packed in plastic.
By attending this summit, I was hoping to hear some of these issues, but today’s focuses was “to reduce traffic, to increase walk and bicycle paths” in order to transition to a “zero emission city” and reduce "diseases, COPD, particulates, etc).
Each borough is committed to contribute and to achieve UK and EU standards, but they are not acting alone, they are always searching for partners, so that they can find more fundings. Not only to work on reducing the gases, but to analyze air pollution and to find new city spots, in order to work on cleaning the air.
As you know, air pollution cannot be seen, nor touched. Some are not even aware of this serious problem that dirty air is causing. COPD (Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), this is certainly caused by excessive smoking, asthma and others, but air pollution is also responsible for it.
Here are some actions that the city is enforcing the city of London to the dirty air awareness:
-Air quality alerts, through “apps, software, websites, signs by the river, bus stops, underground, etc”.
-Extra charges for older polluting vehicles and buses, per car, per day.
-Creating "ultra low emission zones (ULEZ).
-New double check system: hybrid, hydrogen or electric cars.
-New single check system: zero exhaust emission from year 2020.
-No more diesel taxis form year 2018.
-Many EV-Insfrastructure throughout the city, special ones for taxis, that can be charged faster.
-Working on efficient buildings, transports and clean energy.
-Lazer technology, that was mentioned by the audience.
-Building secure pedestrian and bicycle paths.
-Closing traffic roads in residential streets.
-Encouraging the people to be outside, to exercise more. It is a cultural shift.
(By the way, if you go to the Netherlands, everybody has a bike, I have never seen so many bikes in the street, but it has been mentioned that Copenhagen (Denmark) and Amsterdam (Holland) pays bas, they started this actions plans in the 70’s
-The air study around Heathrow airport. Planes taking off, planes landing, taxing, and air freight.
Above has nothing to do with my Food blog, like I mentioned, I am concerned of air pollution, because of our behaviors, bad traffic, rubbish and plastic waste.
This subject is infinite, and I truly believe that no matter which industry you are in, you should be well informed of this problem and give your part, weather it is “more walking, less driving” or “buying less food in plastic” in other words, being “conscious”, I am certain, the difference will be significant.
Thank you very much for the Borough of Hounslow for organizing this event, for the wonderful lunch and giving us your precious information.
Food with Susi