Pollution isn’t just a problem in big cities. The pollution levels in some areas of Colchester exceed national and World Health Organisation guidelines.
These areas include parts of the town centre and also residential streets such as Brook Street, East Hill and parts of Mersea Road and Military Road.
A major cause of this pollution is vehicles but open fires, log burners and industry emissions also contribute.
The effects of air pollution
Air pollution has been linked to many health problems including asthma, strokes, cancer and heart disease. Shockingly, 1 in 20 deaths in Colchester are linked to pollution.
Children are particularly at risk. Research has shown pollution affects their lung growth and development. Pregnant women, the elderly and those with heart and respiratory conditions are also vulnerable to its effects.
Tackling pollution in our borough is therefore vital.
About the Clean Air for Colchester project
Clean Air for Colchester is a community led project to reduce pollution and make the air cleaner and healthier for residents and visitors.
The project, funded by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, launched in 2019 with a focus on encouraging drivers to switch off their engines when stationary and promoting walking and cycling for short journeys.
We know from research by Kings College London that small changes to driving habits, such as switching the engine off whilst stationary, can cut pollution by up to 30% and the effects are immediate.
The project was developed in partnership with local people using insight from 3 months of public engagement in which over 3,000 residents, schools, businesses and community groups gave feedback.
The project has expanded and with additional funding includes the CAReless Pollution No Idling Campaign, Home Burning Information Campaign, Roadside Signage Trial and the start of an exciting initiative which will see pay as you go electric bikes/cargo bikes and electric cars available to hire in Colchester.
Take Care of Your Air
Take action to improve the air where you live: