Today there has been coverage in the Guardian of calls from campaign groups to review the Clean Air Strategy in light of evidence linking air pollution and the impact of coronavirus.
The article focuses on a letter sent to the Environment Secretary by Mums for Lungs and the Good Law Project to consider air pollution as a factor affecting the severity of coronavirus for some people. We can confirm the letter has been received and a we will respond in due course.
Air pollution comes from a wide-range of sources, including transport and industry, not all of which are equally affected by the measures which are currently in place due to coronavirus.
It’s important that we also understand how the recent changes will affect air quality. That is why we have launched a call for evidence to ensure we can fully understand the impact that coronavirus is having on air quality.
While early signs show some air pollutants have dropped during this unprecedented time, our independent Air Quality Expert Group (AQEG) launched a call for evidence to ensure we fully understand the impact that coronavirus is having on all pollutants. AQEG are currently reviewing and producing a report which will be published in due course.
A Defra spokesperson said:
“We remain committed to being a world leader in tackling air pollution.
“As we rebuild our economy in response to the coronavirus pandemic, we will continue to shape a cleaner, greener and more resilient society.
“While early signs show air pollution has dropped during this unprecedented time, we have launched a call for evidence to ensure we can fully understand the impact that coronavirus is having on air quality for future policy development.”