Clean Air – more than a Zone or a Day

Anyone who lives and works in Birmingham will probably notice air pollution. The smell of exhaust fumes and the dust on our windows and streets are obvious, what is less visible is the damage done to our health.

You don’t need to spend long outside a school to notice traffic buildup and idling of engines – usually at the time when every child is arriving or leaving, exposing them to harmful exhaust fumes, and that’s why much of work has been targeted to work at these schools We have been taking part in Clean Air Day since it began two years ago, and are working with our partners and the City Council to make a difference for all our citizens.

This year is no exception, and perhaps more important than ever given the wider acceptance of the problem and the announcement of Birmingham City Council’s Clean Air Zone starting in January 2020.

We’ve focused on where the problem is worst, monitoring pollution and working with our partners. We are working in schools across Birmingham running Clean Air Assemblies all this week, and with communities like Swans Corner Community Group to run awareness events. We’re working with the West Midland Combined Authority to develop a regional approach, and with Birmingham City Council to limit traffic outside schools.

We’re running Clean Air walks, we’re interviewing local people, parents and children about attitudes to Clean Air, and of course, encouraging cycling and other forms of travel to school and to work across Birmingham. Bikeability cycle training continues a-pace at schools across Birmingham.

This year we are planning to run a cycle clean air day monitor relay on Clean Air Day, building on our huge map monitoring air all over Birmingham to be shared and used to assess and improve our Air Quality. Volunteers will use an air quality monitor for part of their day , and then to pass it onto someone else – changeovers are planned over a coffee or tea then the project will cover the costs. To find out more contact Bryn – Bryn.lewis@the.aws.org

Fitting an air quality monitor outside Corpus Christi RC Primary School

If you want to find out more about Clean Air Day, or to get involved in campaigning for cleaner air, please contact us or find out more here:

Active CommunitiesClean Air and Environment