Report finds life expectancy in region reduced by average of six months due to pollution
Matthew TaylorThu 14 Jun 2018 00.01 BST
Dangerous levels of air pollution are having a devastating impact on the health of people living in Greater Manchester and costing the regional economy £1bn every year, according to a new study.
The report found that toxic air is reducing life expectancy in the region by an average six months and, over the next century, estimates “1.6 million life years” will be lost unless action is taken.
The report by IPPR North comes ahead of a national air pollution conference being held in Salford on Thursday.
The thinktank’s director, Sarah Longlands, said the “human cost of the air pollution crisis” in the city could not be overstated.
“People’s lives are being cut short, our children’s health is being put at risk and this is before you even consider the £1bn annual economic burden that poor quality air places on the local economy.
“For too long, the debate on air pollution has been focused on London. But now for the first time, we understand the full extent of the problem in Greater Manchester. We simply cannot allow this to continue.”
The study says the Manchester region faces a similar air pollution challenge – caused principally by transport emissions – to London where the mayor Sadiq Khan recently outlined plans for an extended ultra low emissions zone. But it concludes Manchester has neither the powers nor the strategy to tackle the issue.