16-foot lungs installed in London ‘to make air pollution visible’

Energy firm E.ON yesterday (September 19) unveiled two 16ft lungs on the banks of the River Thames to visually represent the issue of air pollution.

They want the installation to raise awareness after they conducted a survey of over 2,000 people across the UK that revealed 88% of people are confused about air pollution and 89% would do more to tackle it if they knew how.

LUNGS has been unveiled by E.ON ahead of the week-long Global Climate Strike (September 20-27) and London Car Free Day (September 22), and is backed by Iain Stewart, Professor of Geoscience at the University of Plymouth, to help raise awareness, educate and provide practical advice about air pollution and clean air.

Inside the lungs are different colours of smoke which aims to show the different pollutants.

Iain Stewart, Professor of Geoscience at University of Plymouth, UNESCO Chair in Geoscience and Society and broadcaster said: ‘Despite it being invisible, toxic air is the UK’s number one environmental hazard and public health priority. It demands national strategy and work to raise awareness.’

The new research also revealed that almost half of people (47%) can’t name a single air pollutant whilst over two thirds (67%) have become more concerned about air pollution over the last year.

The majority (71%) think government should take responsibility for air pollution, followed by large corporations (64%) and the public (63%).

Other results of the survey were 24% of people ‘put up’ with air pollution due to the convenience of living in a city.

81% said they feel like they have no choice but to live in an area with poor air quality.

Photo Credit – E.ON.