Air pollution is focus of awareness campaign

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A new campaign has been launched in Sheffield to raise awareness about air pollution.

The Air Aware in Sheffield campaign is focusing on the different types of air pollution and the health risks associated with them, as well as giving people information on what they can do to help reduce air pollution in the city.

It is also intended that Air Aware, which will look primarily at the biggest single source of air pollution - traffic - will act as a platform to spark debate about air quality.

Coun Jack Scott, cabinet member for environment, said: “Air quality is an absolutely vital issue for all of us in Sheffield. Regardless of where people live in the city, or whether they are drivers, cyclists, walkers or bus users, each and every one of us can play an important part.

“We’re not telling people to give up their vehicles – but what we are saying is if you have to drive, think about driving low emission vehicles such as gas, electric or hybrid cars or petrol cars instead of diesel. Also try ‘eco-driving’ techniques and think about ‘car sharing’, both of which will save you money on fuel, as well reducing emissions and improving air quality.

“It would be great if everybody could use their cars a little less, and cycle or walk a little more. Even giving up the car just one day a week would make a huge difference.”

Poor air quality is thought to account for up to 500 premature deaths a year in Sheffield, with health costs of around £160 million a year.

A bus advertising campaign, part of Air Aware in Sheffield, has already been launched, with adverts on the back of eco-friendly hybrid vehicles. Radio advertising and poster campaigns will begin in the coming weeks.

n Visit www.facebook.com/airawaresheffield and @AirAwareSheff on Twitter.