It seems that every cloud does have a silver lining. The Covid-19 pandemic is a very dark cloud, and we must respect the pain and suffering it has brought to so many households. One thing that is being widely commented on, however, is the improvement in air quality, caused by the reduction in vehicle use on our roads.
A Bridgwater postal worker said last week that his asthma condition has vastly improved in the last few weeks. We know that our atmosphere, poisoned by traffic emissions, attacks the heath of children, but how often do we also consider the dangers to those working out of doors?
Recent research, carried out in Germany, and published in the journal “Science of the Total Environment” suggests that high levels of air pollution may be “one of the most important contributors” to deaths from Covid-19. An analysis shows that, of the coronavirus deaths across 66 regions in Italy, Spain, France and Germany, 78% of them occurred in just five regions, and these were the most polluted.
Carbon emissions are destroying our world
We know that high carbon emissions are destroying our world. We have been forced to learn the lesson that it is our own behaviour that is part of the problem.
When this dark time is over, we appeal to every member of the public to eliminate unnecessary car journeys, and use public transport, cycle or walk where possible, as one way to make a contribution towards improving the health of our community. The Bridgwater Town Council Transport Forum will continue to press for improved public transport in the region, but private transport operators will only provide services if the demand is there. It is important to recognise that we should not go back to business as usual. In the future we must embrace change for a cleaner environment. The BTC Transport Forum will be looking for opportunities to improve clean public transport, for the people of Bridgwater.
Cllr Glen Burrows (above), Cllr Mick Lerry, Cllr Dave Loveridge
Transport Group, Bridgwater Town Council