Scunthorpe has been named among the worst cities in the UK for air pollution in a new World Health Organisation report.
There are two types of air pollution PM10 (particles between 2.5 and 10 micro meters) and PM2.5 (particles less than 2.5 micro meters).
Within the UK, Scunthorpe was named as the 10th worst city for PM10 pollution and the 8th worst city for PM2.5 pollution. Only just below industrial cities like London and Sheffield.
For each µg/m3 (one-millionth of a gram per cubic meter) of air in Scunthorpe, there are 22 PM10 particles and 15 PM2.5 particles. 1.5 times the target level of pollution for PM2.5 particles.
By comparison, the worst city in the UK, Port Talbot, had 27 PM10 particles and 18 PM2.5 particles per µg/m3 of air.
10 micro meters is less than the width of a single hair, and can be easily ingested into the lungs where it can lead to health problems such as lung cancer, respiratory infections and pneumonia.
PM10 includes particles such as road dust, whereas PM2.5 particles are produced via combustion and come from factories, motor vehicles and wood burning.