Children in the United Kingdom are found to have smaller lungs and are prone to asthma because of the lethal air pollution.
It seems that the efforts employed by the government to curtail toxic air pollution from the city jam are not enough. The research involved more than 2,000 young individual residents. Although low emission zones are put in place to keep high-polluting cars at a distance and have slightly improved air quality, still, more vigorous measures are necessary to better children’s well-being. Researchers said that the ultra-low emission zone that will commence in 2019 is a move to the right objective.
Air pollution caused by cars and other sources cause the death of 4 million people annually, and children are most vulnerable to its consequences. The establishment of low emission zones prohibits or charge vehicles driving into portions of the city in order to deter their use.
Queen Mary University of London Professor Chris Griffiths said, “We are raising a generation of children reaching adulthood with stunted lung capacity.”
The co-author also condemned the car industry including the government for its failure to carry out decisions accordingly to guarantee cities and town to slash traffic. The study was published in the “The Lancet Public Health” journal and has been one of the primary efforts to discern if this kind of measure had made an impact on the health of the London residents.
Eight and nine-year-old children from Hackney, Greenwich, City of London, and Tower Hamlets were enrolled by the researchers. All of the children failed to reach existing European Union nitrogen dioxide pollution thresholds. Their health was monitored for five years from the time the low emission zone was established. It was found out that children who were exposed to air pollution dropped around 5% of their lung’s efficiency.
Although nitrogen dioxide levels declined, there was no drop in lung conditions among the youngsters. The scientists noted that the outcome of the study demonstrated the significance of evidence-based policymaking and provided additional assistance for the ultra-low emission zone that would envision stricter measures placed on vehicles that enter the city.
Mumsnet, a UK website for parents conducted a survey and recognized that a few concerned parents think of moving to a different location because of the toxic air pollution. In Greater London, about four in 10 parents considered leaving, compared to 28% in urban areas in general.
A post in the website tells of a couple considering to send their child in south-west London to study in one of the two private schools. Commuting will take 12 minutes for the first one and the second school will take 45 minutes. They were inclined to enroll their child to the nearer school (12-minute bus ride) but was discouraged by local pollution evaluations.
British Lung Foundation head, Sarah Macfadyen said that because the children lost about 5% of their lung’s capacity, it is something they cannot get back. She added that it is something that will put their lives in danger fo infections and breathing conditions. That is because of the air they breathe when they go and went home from school and everywhere they go.