The problem of air pollution is not one to be looked down on or indeed ignored. Whether it’s in the UK or abroad, air pollution is an issue that the whole world needs to face together. Despite the news that a number of areas across the UK – particularly in London – breach the safe pollution levels and air quality control levels established by the World Health Organisation, very little is being done to minimise the problem. With air pollution being a potential cause of around 28,000 deaths,it is clear that air pollution is an issue that needs to be handled, but whose job is it?
A Global Issue for the Global Community
Although air pollution an issue that effects a number of small communities, the problem should not be left to be faced by the people in those communities. London by itself cannot handle the issue of air pollution, and it will take intervention from the rest of the UK to make things better.
In Tower Hamlets, the number of deaths which could be linked to air pollution could be at around 8.1 percent, and with such staggering figures, is it not the responsibility of every tax paying adult in the UK to help resolve this issue? The question is, how can people help?
Blame the Government
Your first response to this issue might be to want to blame the government. They’re in control of the country so they should be held accountable for its problems, and should do all it can to resolve them. Of course, this is true to a certain extent, but the issue is complex.
London, for example, is a global trading centre and a huge economic force, if trade and industry levels are reduced to increase the quality of air, then there wouldn’t be enough of an economy to financially support the people that the reduction would be aiming to save – there could be an increase in poverty-related fatalities.
So although the government does have a part to play in terms of intelligent policy making, it’s essential to remember that the government can’t control everything and it’s down to individuals to make changes on the ground.
Small Actions Create Big Waves
If individuals in communities get together to implement strategic community wide policies, they can be as effective as a government at bringing about change. Campaigning for wider sidewalks to allow people to put more distance between them and the vehicles on the roadwould be a good start. Companies could also ensure they are following the right procedures when it comes to air pollution control as industry is a massive contributor to this overall issue.
Naturally, the UK can’t solve the world air pollution crisis alone, but restoring a safe level of pollution to the world’s air should be achievable.
Photo Credit By: blog.epa.gov