Air pollution affects us all, but its consequences often go unnoticed. Unfortunately, this is an environmental issue and a public health crisis. According to a report by the Royal College of Physicians, around 40,000 premature deaths in the UK every year are caused by air pollution. The same is true for many other countries around the world. This devastating problem is often overlooked, but it is time to pay closer attention.
The World Health Organization has categorised outdoor air pollution as a carcinogenic substance. Air pollution increases asthma, lung cancer, and COPD, among other illnesses. Poor air quality is considered a significant public health issue linked to a new outbreak of respiratory ailments, including the recent COVID-19 pandemic.
Causes of air pollution
To understand how air pollution takes such a toll on human health, knowing what causes it is essential. Diesel emissions from vehicles and the burning of fossil fuels often cause air pollution. This creates a cocktail of toxic chemicals such as nitrogen dioxide, sulphur dioxide, and particulate matter, which we breathe in daily. These pollutants can damage our lungs and other organs and cause or exacerbate various health problems, including respiratory diseases, heart disease, and stroke. Moreover, air pollution can even reach developing foetuses, leading to premature births and low birth weight.
But why are so many lives lost each year? One major factor is the long-term exposure to polluted air. Researchers have found that people in polluted cities live shorter lives than those in less polluted cities. This is particularly concerning, as cities are home to more than 55% of the world’s population, thereby exposing them to more significant threats from pollution.
Exposure to air pollution can trigger health emergencies such as heart attacks and asthma attacks, which can be fatal. Children, older people, and those with pre-existing medical conditions are especially vulnerable to the harmful effects of air pollution.
It’s not just individuals affected by air pollution; the damage extends to entire communities. In areas with high levels of air pollution, school children often have reduced lung capacity, leading to impaired academic performance. Businesses and industries often feel the consequences, too.
According to the World Bank, air pollution is estimated to have cost the UK economy billions in 2013 due to lost working days, healthcare costs, and decreased productivity.
Measures taken to improve air quality
Diesel vehicles are among the significant contributors to air pollution, particularly in urban areas where the concentration of diesel emissions is high. Several measures have been taken to improve air quality to address the diesel emissions problem, with emission claims playing a critical role.
One of the measures taken to improve air quality is the introduction of stringent regulations on emissions from diesel vehicles. Governments and environmental agencies have mandated using cleaner fuels and installing advanced exhaust systems in diesel vehicles to reduce harmful emissions. In addition, there has been a shift towards developing and using alternative energy sources, such as electric and hybrid vehicles, which emit significantly lower pollution levels than diesel vehicles.
Diesel claims are another critical approach adopted to address diesel emissions. A diesel claim is a legal action against manufacturers of diesel vehicles, alleging that the cars emit more pollution than they are legally allowed. These claims are based on the fact that many diesel vehicles have been found to emit more pollutants in real-world driving conditions than they do in laboratory tests.
Diesel claims have successfully forced manufacturers to take action to address the problem of diesel emissions. For instance, Nissan, a leading automaker that has consistently presented itself as being environmentally conscious, has found itself in the middle of a scandal, especially from its diesel-fuelled vehicles, that its emissions – according to authorities – are not as clean as they purport to be.
Nissan has long marketed its diesel cars to be environmentally friendly. They even produced an in-house eco-friendly brand called Pure Drive to indicate its commitment to making sustainable cars.
Nissan claims their engines meet or exceed the requirements of applicable emissions regulations. But in 2018, the Japanese car brand admitted to falsifying emission tests, using “altered measurement values” on their reports. The revelations about Nissan diesel emissions are particularly alarming for a company that has been at the forefront of innovation and sustainability in the automotive industry.
Nissan was one of the first companies to market a mass-produced electric car, the Nissan LEAF, launched in 2010. However, the Nissan diesel emissions scandal has tarnished its reputation and eroded its credibility on environmental issues.
How do I start my diesel claim?
Starting a diesel claim can seem daunting, but with a bit of guidance and knowledge, it is a process that can be easily navigated. You can visit ClaimExperts.co.uk for a more in-depth walkthrough on starting the process.
From there, contacting an emissions expert who can help solidify your case is best. It is important to remember that creating a diesel claim can lead to a resolution that benefits both the individual and the environment, so it is a process worth pursuing.