A new report says that every single area of London, England exceeds the World Health Organization’s limits for PM2.5 — a treacherous air pollutant, according to new research from the London Atmospheric Emissions Inventory announced last week by mayor Sadiq Khan.
The pollutant PM2.5 is miniscule — about 3% the diameter of a human hair — but it’s matter in the air that has the single greatest effect on human health, both short and long term. A person’s risk of death from respiratory and cardiovascular causes are increased due to exposure to it and kids who grow up breathing it in are more likely to suffer from asthma, the report said.
Even being in the city for a 24-hour period of time can leave a person coughing, according to Condé Nast Traveler. The report said that about 7.9 million residents of the city — about 95% of the population — live in areas where the limit of PM2.5 is exceeded by at least 50%.
It’s “sickening,” Khan said during a speech at London’s City Hall last week, the travel site reported.
The mayor has unveiled a series of steps he and the city are going to take toward reducing the pollution level. This included reducing the number of heavy pollutant-producing, wood-burning stoves and charging people who drive older cars that tend to create more pollution than newer models, according to the Guardian.
The report says that these and other measures could lead to a significant pollution reduction by 2030.