Air pollution event recap

I helped organise an air pollution event in Aberdeen yesterday. This was a joint initiative of the Aberdeen Cycle Forum and Friends of the Earth Scotland. Air quality has been in the news recently because we’re only just starting to understand the harmful effect air pollution has on our health. It’s particularly harmful to young children, the elderly, and people with respiratory illnesses.

When we think of air pollution we often think of London but Aberdeen has problems too. There are 13 locations around the city that have been identified as having toxic air originating from motor vehicles. The nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter emitted by vehicles causes asthma and lung cancer. In children it can stunt the growth of their lungs and even damage brain development.

We want Aberdeen City Council to take bold and ambitious action to address the problem. We’d like to see low emissions zones, more pedestrianisation, and pollution-free public transport.

The event was covered by the press and Daniel made the front page of the local paper today:


Here’s the main article. Elizabeth is wearing the gas mask. The full story is here.


The kids thought it was great fun wearing the gas mask and took it in turns racing around saying, “Are you my mummy?”. In case you don’t know the reference -



I got this lovely photo of Elizabeth trying to ride Hoss:



5 thoughts on “Air pollution event recap”

  1. Interesting! Maybe this is interesting for you: It is an online tool to visualize local air pollution. It relies on several data sources (satellite, monitoring stations, weather forecast, traffic) and shows quite impressively the air pollution along the major traffic routes in most areas of Europe. It was presented during a course about measuring the composition of the atmosphere from EUMETSAT ( I am currently participating.

  2. It made me smile – obviously not the issue, but your kids’ enthusiasm for campaigning.
    Our Eco group at school went to meet the Headteacher this afternoon to talk about increasing recycling. I’ll find out about it tomorrow.

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