Commenting on figures analysed by Friends of the Earth Scotland, which showed that air quality breached legal limits during 2021 in Glasgow despite traffic levels continuing to be lower due to Covid restrictions, Peter McGettrick, Chairman of British Safety Council, said:
“It’s concerning to see how air pollution levels in Glasgow and elsewhere in Scotland rose again last year, having fallen back in 2020, and on Hope Street levels of Nitrogen Dioxide even broke the legal limit.
“It’s why I took to the streets of Glasgow in November during COP26 to show people the impact air pollution has on our health, and especially people whose work means they don’t get to choose the air they breathe.
“It is also why British Safety Council wants the UK Government to be ambitious when it sets new air quality targets later this year and match the World Health Organisation’s new and ambitious limits.”
British Safety Council has been campaigning since 2019 to raise awareness of the impact that air pollution can have on the health of outdoor workers.
One of the drivers of its campaign, Time to Breathe, has been the call for more and better data on how air pollution affects people such as outdoor workers. There is little research on the impact air pollution has on workers like street cleaners, refuse workers, traffic police, cycle couriers, construction or maintenance workers, newspaper sellers, gardeners, teachers or security guards working on busy roads.
For more on Time to Breathe, visit: https://www.britsafe.org/campaigns-and-policy/time-to-breathe-air-pollution-campaign
You can read the analysis by Friends of the Earth Scotland here: https://foe.scot/press-release/pollution-levels-rebound-in-2021/