Parents could be panned from parking right outside schools

HEALTH experts have stated that cars should be banned from idling near schools in a bid to cut pollution.

In a new report, Public Health England (PHE) calls for a raft of measures, including stopping cars idling near school gates, promoting carpool lanes, and providing priority parking for electric cars.

It is also calling for congestion charges to be imposed in cities across the UK.

The report urges a “step change” in the uptake of low-emission vehicles by setting more ambitious targets for electric car charging points.

Professor Paul Cosford, director for health protection and medical director of PHE, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “I’m a doctor; I see a figure of 35,000 to 40,000 people each year dying as a result of the harm that is caused by air pollution.

And what I also see is that the technologies are available, the things that we need to do we know about, so this is a matter of how we take this issue as seriously as we need to and how we move the technologies and the planning and all of that into reality so we actually deal with this problem for us and for future generations.”

Urging for a culture change, he said: “If we were having a conversation about 30,000 people dying each year because of polluted water supply, I think we would have a very different conversation. It would be about ‘What do we need to do now and how quickly can we do it?”

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