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Are Wansdworth's Cars Killing Us?

Are Wansdworth's Cars Killing Us?

| by Editor | Posted in Balham News

A third of cars owned in Wandsworth are run on diesel, new analysis shows. This comes despite serious health warnings about the risks of cancer and air pollution.

This week, hundreds of doctors, nurses, and other health professionals wrote to the Prime Minister urging the government to remove diesel vehicles as soon as possible as they are causing a “health emergency.”  Local Labour Assembly Member Leonie Cooper, who analysed the levels of diesel cars in Wandsworth, has backed the Mayor of London’s recent call for a diesel scrappage scheme and urged the government to act quickly.   

Department for Transport figures show that of the 80662 in Wandsworth, 26284 are run on diesel. This is higher than the Londonwide average of 31%. There are over 67,000 hybrid electric cars across the capital, but this makes up just 3% of the total.

In 2012, the World Health Organisation classified diesel exhaust as a ‘definite carcinogen’. This was followed by a 2014 report from Transport for London (TfL) which cited that the growing popularity of diesel was a contributing factor in London’s failure to comply with EU air pollution limits. 

Earlier this week, the campaign group ‘Doctors against Diesel’ said the vehicles could cause “irreversible lung damage” to children, and pointed out that the government’s own chief medical officer has said diesel vehicles should be phased out. The letter, which was sent to the Prime Minister, was signed by professors of paediatrics and public health from universities including the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Queen Mary, and the Faculty of Public Health.

Do you drive diesel? Could you start to plan to make the switch to a cleaner car? keep Wandsworth safe and clean and look out for schemes that will help you to make the change.

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