Funding for pollution barriers in London schools

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has awarded more than £1.27million in funding to help tackle the capital’s air pollution through projects such as ‘pollution barriers’ for schools

Other projects include new green spaces for housing estates, community gardens to help improve mental health and wildlife habitats in parks.  

The winning Community Green Space projects include help for 29 primary schools located next to some of London’s most polluted roads, which will receive a combined total of £400,000 for green infrastructure in playgrounds to reduce children’s exposure to harmful traffic emissions.

As well as the grants, the Mayor has published two new maps that detail London’s green spaces and waterways and can be used to help identify where greater investment in greening would bring significant benefits.

The projects form part of a package of measures to protect children from toxic air that the Mayor is delivering, including helping schools through his air quality audits programme, working with boroughs to restrict road usage outside school entrances, upgrading boilers, tackling engine idling, promoting walking and cycling and piloting indoor air filters.

Sadiq has recently expanded London’s network of air quality monitors, including providing them for many schools. The monitors will help assess the impact of green barriers. These measures sit alongside the introduction of the 24-hour Ultra Low Emission Zone on 8 April in Central London.

Marner Primary School in Bromley-by-Bow, Tower Hamlets, has been awarded £30,000 from the Mayor’s Community Green Space fund to transform its playground with a range of green measures to reduce emissions from the highly polluted A12 and nearby Devas Street. The school is one London’s most polluted primary schools, and was one of 50 assessed last year as part of the Mayor’s air quality audits programme. The school will install ‘green screens’ of evergreen climbing plants, such as ivy, to create a ‘barrier’ wall between the playground and Devas Street. Further trees and hedgerows will be planted along the school perimeter, and a ‘green gateway’ will be created at the main entrance to encourage children to walk through a tunnel of evergreen plants.

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