Tower Hamlets council has announced the five recipients of up to £200,000 in funding to tackle air pollution in the borough – as well as announcing a further round of financial support to local organisations and businesses.
The London borough is delivering the funding as part of its ‘Breathe Clean’ campaign, which includes work by the council, the NHS, Transport for London (TfL) and environmental charities to reduce pollution levels.
To be eligible for funding, projects must be related to either reducing air pollution emissions, reducing air exposure to pollution or increasing awareness of air pollution; be directly relevant to actions in the council’s Air Quality Action Plan (AQAP); have a measurable impact; and have wider community benefits, the local authority has said.
Five organisations were successful in the first round of applications this year.
These include St Luke’s Primary School on the Isle of Dogs which was successful in its application to install a green screen around the nursery.
Poplar Harca Housing Association will deliver three projects, including installing ‘pollution absorbing plants and mosses’ at its new offices to improve local air quality. Staff will be encouraged to swap their cars for cycling, with funding for battery powered bikes and battery-powered landscaping equipment will be trialled with funding to replace 30 diesel tools.
Marner Primary School, Bow, is working with up to 100 parents and children to teach them how they can reduce air pollution by changing their behaviour.
Swan Housing Association is using funding to teach 36 residents how to build their own bikes and cycle more, aimed at improving their health and the local environment.
And, Tower Hamlets Community Housing is installing electric charging points to support a move away from diesel powered cleaning vans to environmentally friendly electric ones.
An additional round of funding worth more than £121,000 for community groups, schools, local businesses and housing associations interested in reducing air pollution has also been announced.
Applications are due by 31 December, and bids of funding for up to £10,000 per project are being accepted.
John Biggs, Mayor of Tower Hamlets said: “We received some excellent applications in the first round of funding and I look forward to seeing the projects reach fruition as part of our ‘Breathe Clean’ campaign.
“Our ambition is to reduce air pollution to safe levels, but I would urge residents to find out what they can do locally to protect children from the dangers of air pollution, and to think about projects that could benefit their neighbourhoods through this funding.â€?
Councillor Rachel Blake, Deputy Mayor and Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Air Quality added: “I was really impressed with the ideas and ambition expressed in the first round of applications. People can really make a difference to pollution in their local area by making small changes, like leaving the car at home for short journeys.â€?
Tower Hamlets Air Quality Fund