Farnham’s Designed Toxic Pollution

Successive governments have drained democracy out of Local Planning, which has sustained Farnham’s unsustainable toxic atmospheric pollution and congestion. It was in 1995 that Farnham’s Air Quality Management Area was declared, this was followed in 2010 by the Air Quality Standards Regulations 2010. Regulations that set the then “safe” limit values for toxic microscopic pollutants. Perversely these Regulations have neither been actively enforced nor given sufficient weight in Waverley Borough Council planning decisions.

These actions actively disregard the World Health Organisation’s confirmation that airborne microscopic pollutants overwhelm the body’s defences and penetrate deep into respiratory and circulatory systems, damaging lungs, heart and brain.

Fortunately, the UK Government now confirms their recognition that “air quality is the largest environmental health risk in the UK. It shortens lives and contributes to chronic illness. Health can be affected both by short-term, high-pollution episodes and by long-term exposure to lower levels of pollution.” The Government objective is to reduce public exposure to particulate matter pollution to levels recommended by the World Health Organization. Their long-term target is to reduce people’s exposure to PM2.5 and establish the action needed to meet the World Health Organisation annual mean guideline limit of 10 μg/m3.

2020 can be the year when Farnham’s air pollution is actively and continuously reduced to levels below “safe” statutory limits. This requires that only sustainable Development be approved, and that National and Local Government end their hostility to Environmental Impact Assessments. These Assessments impartially protect human health, the environment and our limited natural resources. Hostility to such objectives is irrational and not in the Public Interest.

Brian Edmonds

Wrecclesham and Rowledge

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