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Air Quality


Air pollution has been classified as the largest environmental risk to UK public health. In 2016, the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health and the Royal College of Physicians estimated about 40,000 people in the UK die every year due to outdoor air pollution, with disadvantaged communities disproportionately affected. It also estimated it costs the country £20 billion a year.

The Coronavirus pandemic has brought air quality into sharper focus. Emerging research suggests that poor air quality is correlated with higher death and infection rates from COVID-19. The lockdown led to a significant short-term improvement in air quality in many areas, but there are concerns that policies to discourage the use of public transport to limit transmission of the virus may now lead to increased road traffic pollution in cities.

In this context the EFRA Committee is revisiting its 2018 Improving Air Quality report and whether the Government’s 2019 Air Quality Strategy and the Environment Bill will deliver the national leadership necessary to deliver the “step change” in how air pollution is tackled in the UK.

Read the interactive summary of our report.

Read the call for evidence for more information about this inquiry.

Upcoming events

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Past events

Monday 16 November 2020
4:00pm Private
4:30pm Public
Air Quality - Oral evidence 16 November 2020
  • Rebecca Pow MP (DfT Minister at Defra)
  • Rachel Maclean MP (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at Department for Transport)
  • Dr Bill Parish (Head of Air Quality & Industrial Emissions at Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs)
  • Andrew Jackson (Deputy Director at Joint Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and Department for Transport Air Quality Unit)
Room 5, Palace of Westminster
Tuesday 3 November 2020
1:45pm Private
2:30pm Public
Air Quality - Oral evidence 3 November 2020
  • Marvin Rees (Mayor at Bristol City Council)
  • Matthew Holmes (Deputy Leader at Derby City Council)
Room 5, Palace of Westminster
Tuesday 29 September 2020
2:00pm Private
2:30pm Public
Air Quality - Oral evidence 29 September 2020
  • Kate Langford (Programme Director at Guy's and St Thomas' Charity)
  • Parveen Kumar (Professor at British Medical Association (BMA))
  • Jemima Hartshorn (Founder at Mums for Lungs)
  • Paul Swinney (Director of Policy at Centre for Cities)
  • Subrah Krishnan-Harihara (Head of Research at Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce)
The Wilson Room, Portcullis House
Tuesday 8 September 2020
2:00pm Private
2:30pm Public
Air Quality - Oral evidence 8 September 2020
  • Professor Eloise Scotford (Professor at University College London)
  • Professor Alastair Lewis (Professor at University of York)
  • Professor Anna Hansell (Director at Centre for Environmental Health and Sustainability, University of Leicester)
  • Professor Sir Michael Marmot (Director of the Institute of Health Equity and Professor of Epidemiology at University College London (UCL))
The Wilson Room, Portcullis House

Contact us

We can’t usually help you with an individual problem or a specific complaint.

  • Email:
  • Phone: Media enquiries: 020 7219 3138
  • Address: Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee, House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA