July 25, 2019 3.41 pm This story is over 29 months old

Extinction Rebellion responsible for air pollution danger signs

They said people had a “right to know” about the risks

Extinction Rebellion Lincolnshire have claimed responsibility for a number of “danger” signs in Lincoln city centre warning people of a health risk due to high air pollution.

Campaigners said people “had a right to know” about the risks and put up the signs over the weekend to coincide with a bike ride through the city.

Around six signs were put up at the bottom of Lindum Road and down Broadgate at traffic lights and pedestrian crossings.

They appear to include the city council’s logo and warn people that air pollution in the area may “adversely effect” their health or “cause premature death”.

Demonstrators held a bike ride through the city to raise awareness of air pollution over the weekend.

Extinction Rebellion Lincolnshire campaigners held a bike ride through Lincoln to raise awareness of transport pollution. Photo: Edward Francis

Rosemary Robinson, a campaigner for Extinction Rebellion, said pollution in the Broadgate area caused by transport often exceeds legal limits.

“Extinction Rebellion believes the city council is failing in its duty of care to protect its residents,” she said.

“Residents have the right to know that high air pollution may adversely affect their health and cause premature death.”

Officials from the authority said air quality was improving in the city, but conceded that part of Broadgate does exceed one of the national guidance limits.

Congestion on Broadgate in Lincoln city centre. Photo: Aaron Renfree

Simon Colburn, assistant director for health and environment services at the council, said: “We have always made our air quality data available to the public, and easy for anyone to find.

“Every year we publish the results of our reports in plain view on the council’s website.

“Extinction Rebellion’s comments are simply untrue, but we believe they may have misinterpreted the figures rather than intentionally spreading misleading information.

“Part of Broadgate does exceed one of the national guidance limits, but every other road in the city is within the nationally agreed limits for air quality.

“The council is continuously seeking to improve air quality in Lincoln and we have seen significant improvement in recent years, but we acknowledge there is always more to do.”

Extinction Rebellion campaigners outside The Guildhall in Lincoln ahead of the City of Lincoln Council meeting on declaring a climate emergency. Photo: Calvin Robinson

The authority currently has an Air Quality Management Area in place which covers Broadgate and other main roads in the city.

It means the city council monitors the areas as they are likely to exceed the air quality objectives.

Meanwhile, the authority declared a climate emergency earlier this week and committed to becoming carbon neutral by 2030.

Extinction Rebellion welcomed the pledge, but added that campaigners would keep pressure on other authorities, particularly those on the coast, to make declarations.

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