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08 Jan 2009 03:01:22

Air pollutant levels fall across UK

Air pollutant levels fall across UK
Pollution in the air fell between 2006 and 2007, according to the latest figures from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

Its National Atmospheric Emissions Inventory for UK emissions of sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, non-methane volatile organic compounds (NMVOCs) and ammonia found that emissions of each of these pollutions has decreased.

During the period, NMVOCs in the air fell by two percent, while ammonia levels dropped by three percent.

Even more impressively, seven percent less nitrogen oxides were in the air while sulphur dioxide emissions were down 12 percent.

The news will be welcomed by environmental groups as these four pollutants can have a damaging impact on ecosystems as well as being harmful to human health.

"This represents a continuation of the long-term trend of a reduction in emissions of these pollutants," Defra said.

"Since 1990, there have been decreases of 21 percent for ammonia, 46 percent for nitrogen oxides, 64 percent for NMVOCs and 84 percent for sulphur dioxide."

Meanwhile, separate figures show that airport operator BAA has failed to control pollution levels around Heathrow despite pushing for a third runway.


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