"We must protect our children’s health from air pollution", says Deputy Minister for Climate Change


Lee Waters (Image: Welsh Parliament) Senedd (Image: Gwalia)

The Deputy Minister for Climate Change Lee Waters has said that tackling air pollution is "one of the most complex challenges we face, with no simple solution".


Waters made the comments to coincide with Clean Air Day.


The Welsh Government has said that it is "pressing ahead" with plans to introduce a 'Clean Air Act for Wales'.


The Act which will set out a framework for setting targets that are informed by international best practice, and the World Health Organisation air quality guidelines.


Poor air quality is the single largest environmental health risk globally, according to the World Health Organisation, with the effects contributing to reduced life expectancy.


In Cymru poor air quality contributes towards more than one thousand deaths each year.


Speaking at a Clean Air event in Newport, the Deputy Minister said: “Quieter roads, cleaner air, less noise and a closer connection with nature are all a result of the changes brought about by the pandemic. We now need to use this opportunity to shape the way we respond to air pollution issues to protect our children’s health and secure a cleaner future.


“Business as usual is not an option, we need to do things differently and be willing to be bold. We’re already delivering air quality educational schemes in partnership with EESW STEM Cymru, to empower young people to make a change. We’ll also work together with communities, businesses and the public sector to encourage people to play their part in delivering air quality improvements for a healthier and more resilient Wales.


“Having access to a healthy environment and breathing clean air is a right, not a privilege!”