Clean Air Week will run from Monday, November 18 to Friday, November 22. This week-long event is the newest campaign from the Green-Schools Travel programme and is focused on raising awareness of, and taking action, air pollution at school gates.
Following a study carried out in Spring 2019 in partnership with schools and the international Globe programme students discovered that nitrogen dioxide NO2 levels were higher for schools situated in major towns and cities when compared to schools located in rural areas. This can be attributed to traffic at the school gates as well as idling engines from cars and buses.
Green-Schools are asking students to make a pledge to #BeatAirPollution in order to create a healthy environment around the school gate and to improve well-being by travelling to school actively.
Why are we focusing on air pollution? Nitrogen oxides – or NOx – are the gases nitrogen oxide (NO2) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2). Both of these pollutants are emitted when petrol or diesel is burned in internal combustion engines (cars/buses/taxis). NO2 has a negative impact on our health with 1 in 5 children experiencing asthma at some stage, and the main source of NO2 in Ireland is from road transport.
What are we looking for? Schools big and small, rural and urban, primary, secondary and education centers to make a pledge to #BeatAirPollution. This can be done by increasing active travel such as walking, cycling and scooting, using sustainable travel modes or starting an Air Pollution Campaign of your own. Share your initiatives with us by using the hashtag #BeatAirPollution and tag us @GreenSchoolsIre on social media; there is a €250 cash prize up for grabs for the school that best embraces Clean Air Week.
Coordinators will find information and activities in the online No Idling Toolkit and the Air Quality resource to help them launch a clean air-focused campaign during Clean Air Week.
Useful links and resources can be found in the below links and Twitter and Instagram media packs can be downloaded if you wish to share a pledge with your school network.
Clean Air Week Poster 2019 A3
Clean Air Week Poster 2019 A4
Air Quality Toolkit Primary
Air Quality Toolkit Secondary