7 July 2017 Back in the summer on a very warm and balmy day we invited the campaign group Doctors Against Diesel over to Brentford to answer questions from children at Green Dragon Primary School. Ezra Hinds kindly agreed to do the filming and another volunteer, Magred Pryce is now doing the post-production for this short film. As a follow-up from one of our mini-talks on air pollution, children from the school council discussed the issues with Doctor Norrice Liu, Paediatrician at Queen Mary University. We had a really fun morning together and are looking forward to seeing the final film. We’ll make this available to all local schools and online to help raise awareness of the issues of air pollution and more specifically how it impacts the health of children. Read more about Doctors Against Diesel‘s campaign here.
Tues 10 Oct 2017 We met with two post-graduate students Max Grell, Michael Kasimatis and Dr Firat Güder from the Department of Bioengineering at Imperial College London to discuss an App they are working on called Blakbear, which measures pollutants in air using a phone sticker. This nifty device will have the ability to track data and create a personalised graph to indicate how much pollution you have been exposed during a specific journey or time period. We discussed ways we could work together and hope to have a school event in the new year.
Bonnington Square is an inspiration. Just seconds from the busy main roads around Vauxhall station stands a community-lead garden which spills out with infectious abundance on to the surrounding roads. Every opportunity to plant under trees has been taken, road corners transformed in to islands with palm trees and lush green planting. The results of this effort is a haven away from the urban traffic just at the end of the street. The plants naturally help to clean the air by trapping sticky particulates and converting CO2 to O2 for our benefit. It’s a beautiful, tranquil environment which make you want to be outside. Some tips perhaps for making Brentford a greener place to live…
Thurs 17 August Living Streets held a walk of the streets around the Museum of London as a demonstration of ‘psychogeography’, how we feel in a place, do we feel safe, is it an environment you want to be in?
Up on the high-rise walkway with space dedicated to pedestrians it was easy to feel safe and distant from the traffic below. We were asked to take note of how we felt when the open walkway became enclosed with no outlook. The way-finding signs for the Barbican were well placed on the high rise section above the street so that people could find where they were going. Continue reading
Thursday 3 August 2017 Air Quality Brentford met with JCDecaux, TfL and Hounslow Council at the Outdoor Advertising Company’s prestigious Art Deco offices on the Golden Mile. We discussed the possibility of using their advertising space in downtime to raise awareness of the unnecessary pollution caused by idling cars. JCDecaux already use standard stop-start technology on their vehicle fleet and train their drivers to switch off their engines when at a standstill for vehicles without this technology, both for environmental and economic benefit. They have 4 electric vehicles which they plan to increase by a further 6 in the coming year. Continue reading
July 2017 We have just set up a bank account and are ready to accept any financial contributions to our cause.
We are all volunteers so are unpaid, however we are beginning to raise funds for publicity costs and more importantly for planting projects. In addition to liaising with the Council on various greening ideas, we plan to help mitigate the harmful effects of air pollutants with our own projects to make Brentford a much greener place.
If this is something you could help us with that would be wonderful.
Here are our bank details:
Air Quality Brentford
Account number: 76622207
Sort code: 600323
30 June 2017 We attended a Sustainability Summit at Kew House School, organised by InterClimate Network, a charity who work with secondary school students to inspire them to take action in Climate Change, asking ‘What can I do to make a difference?’. Schools involved were Kew House, Gumley House, Isleworth Boys and Hammersmith Academy. Guest speaker Dr Michal Nachmany (Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at LSE) was inspirational, and not just for the students. She discussed how as humans we become addicted to our lifestyles, even if we know it’s bad for us. Plastics, use of electricity, animal products (making 1/4 of emissions in the world) are difficult to step away from. The most vulnerable populations in the world are the most effected by climate change. There is a need for a) Regulation, b) Motivation, what makes people want to change and c) Alternatives.
Air Quality Brentford went along with members of BRAG (Brentford Recycling Action Group) to lead mini-workshops to discuss issues of Air Quality and Recycling, alongside others discussing Transport and Resources. It was a wonderful afternoon and the brainstorming ideas from the pupils were a joy to witness, see above. We hope to work further with these schools in the Autumn term, giving our air quality mini-talk, and look forward to helping them put their actions in to practice to help make our air cleaner.