Asthma UK comment on ClientEarth v UK Government air pollution court ruling

Kay Boycott, Chief Executive at Asthma UK says: "Today's Supreme Court ruling on Nitrogen Dioxide levels (NO2) is significant. Strong evidence shows there is a link between unsafe levels of air pollutants like NO2 and potentially life threatening asthma attacks. Millions of people with asthma tell us that air pollution, including NO2 and other harmful pollutants, makes their asthma worse and some feel they can't even leave the house for fear it will trigger an attack.

"Urgent action to reduce NO2 levels and to meet targets for safe air pollution is needed. 29% of people with asthma have told us that a reduction in air pollution is the single thing that would make the most difference to their quality of life. People with asthma can reduce their risk of having attack by following the pollution forecasts, carrying their reliever inhaler at all times and ensuring they have an up to date written asthma action plan. Anyone who is concerned about how pollution may affect their asthma can call our Helpline on 0300 222 5800 or visit www.asthma.org.uk."

Background

  • Air pollution can also stop many people with asthma from leading normal lives. 29% of people with asthma have told us that a reduction in air pollution is the single thing that would make the most difference to their quality of life, while many feel unable to leave their own homes for fear of having an asthma attack on days of high air pollution.
  • For those living in urban areas where nitrogen dioxide levels are often higher, air pollution is a particular problem. For example, 42% of people with asthma have told us that traffic fumes discourage them from walking or shopping in congested areas.
  • 29% data from the National Asthma Panel.