Forum's air quality project nears launch
The Hampstead Neighbourhood Forum's project to test air quality in Hampstead is about to get under way.
We will obtain updated data on levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) in ten locations and compare the results with those of a similar project in 2015. The Forum is working in partnership with Green School Runs, the Heath & Hampstead Society, and the borough of Camden.
From September 2021, volunteers will carry out the tests after installing diffusion tubes. If you are interested in helping, please email us at [email protected]. We will provide training.
The level of NO2 that we found in 2015 was surprisingly high for leafy Hampstead and inspired some of the policies in the Hampstead Neighbourhood Plan, which was approved by residents in a public referendum in 2018.
The new round of testing will take place over a year. Our team are being advised by Camden’s air quality officer. The readings will be reference quality, fit to stand with Camden’s official figures. We will be able to tell whether we are on track to get inside WHO-recommended limits by 2030, or if more action is needed.
As well as volunteers, we are looking for funding to add to the donations that we have already received. We thank the Heath & Hampstead Society, as well as other donors, for their generous support. We need a total of £2,000 to buy, mount and process the diffusion tubes. The Forum relies entirely on donations to fund all its activities.
We are also seeking funding to extend this project into monitoring the level of particulates - the dangerous microscopic particles that drift from car brakes and tyres into lungs and arteries. Everyone knows that Hampstead’s air is polluted by the school run, but no one knows by how much – nor how much Camden‘s Healthy School Streets programme is helping. The aim will be to build an hour-by-hour particulates profile near each school in the Forum area.
Static particulate monitors are expensive, but £5,000 will buy a monitor that produces “near-reference” quality readings on which Camden can base policy. The readings will either demonstrate that all is well, or will provide a factual basis for action.
We hope that you will consider helping to support this important work. Please click HERE to do so.