Published: Monday, 19th March 2018

Eglinton Primary School children educated their parents by talking to them about idling engines and their impact on local air quality.

Children from the school, and trained adult volunteers, were outside the school gates where they chatted to any parents who kept their engine running while waiting.

They were joined by Cllr David Gardner, Cllr Sizwe James and Cllr Jackie Smith.

The volunteers receive training on how to approach and talk to drivers positively. The idea is to encourage drivers to always turn off their engine while waiting.

This friendly approach is working to educate motorists, inviting them to join the campaign and switch off their engines.

Reducing emissions is a key priority for the Council and addressing current high levels of nitrogen dioxide air pollution, particularly around local schools.

Greener Greenwich Strategy

The Council's Greener Greenwich Strategy outlines the actions the Council intends taking to tackle climate change and air pollution across the borough, which includes a number of innovative local projects such as the introduction of a Low Emission Neighbourhood in west Greenwich in 2017.

View the Greener Greenwich Strategy

The Council is actively looking at other initiatives to improve air quality, particularly relating to the streets around schools.

Cllr David Gardner, Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Social Care

"This is all about constructive conversations and not about confrontation. Air pollution is a particular concern for child health, as it can stunt lung growth and affect lung capacity. Eglinton Primary is a wonderful example of a school that is backing the cleaner air campaign with the majority of children now walking to school every day."

Cllr Sizwe James, Cabinet Member for Transport and Economy

"Many of us simply don't think about the level of emissions which come from a parked car with the engine running. Once people learn how much of an effect this can have on local air quality they are very happy to cut their engines."

Cllr Jackie Smith, Cabinet Member for Community Safety and Environment

"I'm delighted that the overwhelming majority of motorists are very responsive when our volunteers approach them and happy to turn off their engine when they are parked and waiting."