Clean Air Day, the largest campaign in the UK aimed at combating air pollution, is set to take place on Thursday, 15 June 2023. This initiative emphasises the importance of improving air quality not only for physical health and the environment but also for mental and brain health. While the adverse effects of air pollution on physical health have been recognised for decades, recent research reveals its impact on the brain and mental well-being.

Studies have shown that individuals exposed to polluted air are more susceptible to developing mental health conditions and brain disorders. Depression, anxiety, and dementia have been linked to air pollution. When polluted air is breathed in, tiny particles of pollutants can enter the bloodstream through the lungs and eventually reach the brain.

To learn more about air pollution, its impact on health, and how to safeguard oneself and others, visit the Council’s website at https://www.bradford.gov.uk/breathe-better-bradford/breathe-better-bradford/.

Clean Air Day serves as a reminder that each of us can contribute to reducing pollution and improving air quality. Any reduction in air pollution will lead to better health outcomes for individuals and the local community at large.

Bradford Council, in its commitment to supporting Clean Air Day, continues to take a proactive stance in implementing the Clean Air Zone. This initiative aims to curb air pollution and enhance the health of residents across the Bradford District.

Startling statistics reveal that one in every five children in Bradford suffers from breathing problems, with at least a third of childhood asthma cases attributed to air pollution. The District’s hospitals witness approximately 370 respiratory emergency attendances each week.

Air pollution poses the most significant environmental threat to public health, regardless of location or demographic. It can adversely affect every organ in the body, leading to shorter lifespans and chronic illnesses. Inhaling polluted air can inflame the lining of the lungs and enter the bloodstream, impacting the heart and brain and causing lung disease, heart disease, dementia, and strokes.

Every individual has the power to contribute to improving air quality within the District. Bradford Council, Airedale NHS Foundation Trust, Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust, Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, and NHS Bradford District and Craven Clinical Commissioning Group jointly call upon the community to understand their role in reducing air pollution and mitigating its impact on personal and public health.

Councillor Sarah Ferriby, Portfolio Holder for Healthy People and Places, expressed concern over Bradford’s unlawfully high levels of air pollution, directly affecting the health of residents. She emphasised the significance of Clean Air Day in educating the public about the detrimental effects of even minimal air pollution on health. Additionally, she announced the forthcoming introduction of the Clean Air Schools Programme, aimed at improving road safety and air quality around schools for the benefit of children, parents, and staff.

Mel Pickup, Place-Based Lead for Bradford District and Craven Health and Care Partnership, as well as Chief Executive for Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, highlighted the partnership’s commitment to addressing health inequalities and ensuring the well-being of individuals within their homes. Recognising the impact of air pollution, particularly in urban areas, Pickup stressed the importance of Clean Air Day in improving air quality throughout neighbourhoods. Furthermore, he acknowledged the need for the Clean Air Zone in Bradford to meet legal air quality standards and urged individuals to take small actions to reduce their impact on the health of local communities and the broader climate.

For more information on how to participate in Clean Air Day, please visit the official website at www.cleanairday.org.uk.