IPPR report: London's Air Pollution- a mounting public health problem

The IPPR have published a report entitled "Lethal and illegal: Solving London’s air pollution crisis" to set out a strategy to tackle London's air pollution.


Air pollution levels in London exceed legal and World Health Organisation (WHO) limits for NO2, and WHO limits for particulate matter. In 2010, for example, these pollutants caused a range of health problems in the capital that are estimated to have shortened lives by 140,743 years – the equivalent of up to 9,400 deaths, and representing an economic cost of up to £3.7 billion. Poor air quality in London is causing a public health problem of the highest order: air pollution is the second most significant factor in determining health, after smoking.


Key points suggested in the report (for within the mayor’s current term), for new policies to reduce air pollution include focuing on increases in regulation and road charging and tax reforms.


The report states that investment should then be channelled into sustainable alternatives, including shared transport, and support programmes for those groups most affected during the transition. Beyond 2020, their strategy recommends increases in the extent of road pricing in order to reduce the use of petrol vehicles and road miles.