We need to get out of our cars

New research linking heavy traffic with an increased dementia risk shows why we must clean up the air.

Friday, 13th January 2017, 12:00 pm

More cars results in poorer air quality, which causes respiratory health problems and is responsible for more than 40,000 premature deaths in the UK.

A study published in the Lancet shows the negative impact traffic-heavy streets have on other aspects of our health. It finds roughly one in 10 cases of Alzheimer’s in urban areas could be associated with living amid heavy traffic, while those living by busy roads are 12 per cent more likely to be diagnosed with dementia.

The only credible solution to creating healthier streets is one that encourages people out of their cars and onto their feet, bikes or public transport.

For that to happen, we need to build our towns and cities around active modes of travel so that people can walk more, breathe better quality air, and be better protected from preventable illnesses.

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Tompion Platt

Head of Policy and Communications, Living Streets