SERA has pledged its support to Labour’s campaign against air pollution, launched today by Labour’s Environment Secretary, Maria Eagle MP, the Shadow Minister for London Sadiq Khan MP and Shadow Minister for the Natural Environment Barry Gardiner MP today (Wednesday 10 September).
Air pollution causes the early death of around 29,000 people in the UK each year and after smoking is the biggest public health risk in the UK. It is an issue that SERA has been campaigning on for decades. Following the success of our online petition in the summer of 2013, which helped stop the government dismantling the national network of local air pollution monitors, we have made the issue one of our campaign priorities. In July 2014 we were successful in securing a commitment to address air pollution at Labour’s National Policy Forum.
At today’s launch, Labour announced that the next Labour Government will deliver a national framework for Low Emission Zones. This will allow local authorities to act to encourage cleaner, greener, less-polluting vehicles to begin to tackle this problem.
Explaining more, Maria Eagle MP said:
“Local Authorities in London and across the UK want to implement low emission zones but are being discouraged because there is no support from Number 10 or the Mayor. Labour will devolve the power, not just the responsibility, and support local authorities that want to tackle this public health crisis.”
Over the next few months, SERA hopes to work with the Labour team and our SERA councilors, to help develop the details of the plan and to push for wider policies that will ensure that the idea of clean are will become a reality. Our briefing for Labour Councillors on what they can do to improve air quality is here