Manchester is now in the grip of an Air Pollution Crisis, according to Liberal Democrats who have put a team to investigate. “I never thought the pollution could get worse, but it is”, says Jackie Pearcey, the parliamentary candidate for Manchester Gorton. The team of Lib Dem specialists are racing to sift through the evidence.
For an alarming 64 months on the trot the nitrogen dioxide pollution levels at Manchester Metropolitan University have been illegal, breaking the UK and EU limits and the health guidelines of the World Health Authority. “The campus air looks clean, but the staff and students are in the thick of it” says Jackie. "The Conservative government had to be dragged three times through the High Court before it very reluctantly published its national report on NO2 air pollution.
Results for 2016 are now out for 41 NO 2 diffusion tube monitors spread across the city. Only a handful recorded a fall, while 36 recorded a rise. According to the Lib Dems, in only twelve months the average has jumped by an alarming eight percent, taking the average for all the detectors above the annual legal limit. “Our city is now in an air pollution crisis and Teresa May’s government must carry the can according to the Supreme Court”.
Next week, Jackie and her team will unveil the Lib Dem plan to tackle Manchester’s air pollution emergency.