South London council launches campaign to promote air quality awareness at six primary schools
Southwark council in South London has launched a project working with six primary schools to raise awareness of air quality among schoolchildren, teachers and parents.
The programme is part of the Cleaner Air for Schools initiative and involves training, events and campaigns to promote both public and active transport and encourage car drivers to use less polluting types of transport for journeys to and from school.
Parents and carers are encouraged to turn off engines when the car is not moving (no idling), to park away from the school and walk the last leg (park and stride) and to respect the yellow zig-zags and parking controls in the immediate vicinity of the school gates, all of which reduce congestion near the school gates and reduce the exposure of children to the fumes.
The scheme has been initially introduced to: Bessemer George Primary School; Charles Dickens Primary School; Grange Primary School, Peter Hills with St Mary’s and St Paul’s Church of England Primary School, Rotherhithe Primary School and St Francesca Cabrini Roman Catholic Primary School.
The work is being funded by the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs’ (Defra) Air Quality Fund and the Southwark travel plan budget for 2012-13.
Councillor Barrie Hargrove, cabinet member for transport, environment and recycling, said: “The Clean Air for Schools programme supports our cleaner, greener promises and it’s great that we can now progress with things. By taking this grassroots approach we hope that young people realise the importance of reducing air pollution and go on to make informed travel choices.
“We also hope the initiative will enthuse young people to take these positive messages home to their families, as we have seen with our healthy eating messages. My thanks to the six schools who came on board with this. We hope to see more and more schools involved in the coming years to help make Southwark a cleaner place to live and study.â€?
Cleaner Air for Schools is running concurrently across eight London Boroughs in conjunction with the Greater London Authority (GLA).