Pedal to the metal on drive for cleaner air
These clean air campaigners – officers from Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council and volunteers from Basingstoke Clean Air Campaign – were based at Alencon Link and outside Fairfields Primary School and Park View Primary School last week on the national awareness event Clean Air Day (Thursday 20 June).
They asked drivers they spotted with their engines running to switch off, distributed anti-idling car stickers and gave out information on how idling contributes to air pollution.
Council staff also made green pledges on the day, promising to walk short distances instead of driving, stop idling, drive more efficiently and find an alternative to taking the car for short journeys.
Cabinet Member for Environment and Enforcement Cllr Hayley Eachus said: “Vehicles are the main source of air pollution, so I would encourage everyone to think about how they might be able to use their car less.
“But on those occasions when they need to drive, I ask them to please think about how they’re driving. Idling contributes to toxic emissions in the air we breathe both inside and outside the car.
“Everyone needs to make small changes which can add up to a big difference. By making sure that people switch off their engines if they know they will be waiting for more than a minute, it will help to keep our air clean.”
Martin Heath from Basingstoke Clean Air Campaign said: “Thanks to all those motorists that stopped to listen and turned off their engines.
“We all need to drive cars but air pollution is an issue that affects us all. Driving less, walking more, getting on a bus or a bike all help. Switching off when outside schools is particularly important. Our children walk at exhaust pipe level and breathing in toxic fumes harms their developing lungs and brains. It makes sense to switch off when idling.”
For more information about the Clean Air Basingstoke and Deane campaign visit www.basingstoke.gov.uk/clean-air
You can find out more on Basingstoke Clean Air Campaign at https://www.facebook.com/basingstokecleanair or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org