|Poster from Green Action Centre|
The Mayor of London has published his long-awaited School Air Quality Audits, and they include two Brent primary schools which are situated next to busy roads, where the pupils are routinely exposed to illegal levels of air pollution. (1)
Clean Air for Brent is calling for urgent action from Brent Council and Transport for London which will deliver an immediate and positive impact on the air being breathed by children at John Keble, Ark Franklin and other Brent schools.
We strongly urge that all such heavily trafficked roads in Brent become Low Emission Bus Zones – where only the cleanest buses are permitted during school travel times - and emission levels are monitored and acted upon where found to be consistently in breach of legal limits deemed fit for humans.
We also want to see other big polluters such as construction lorries banned from these routes during the start and end of school days.
And the number of children currently transported to and from schools by car must be halved. We have to call time on the ‘school run’.
While we welcome all schools having travel plans and joining TfL’s STARS scheme, we call on Brent Council to end its bizarre and perverse policy of giving teachers more car parking permits if the school has a ‘greener’ travel plan.
Finally we wish to see the Kensal Corridor traffic scheme - which is partly intended to tackle pollution - suspended until it can be fully and successfully integrated with the Ark Franklin Primary air quality improvement proposals. Both schemes need drastic strengthening before being taken forward.
“It is time to stop playing God with children’s lives” said Fiona Mulaisho, Chair of Clean Air for Brent.Editor's note: Parents may be interested in joining the Clean Air Parents' Network HERE