Air quality threat from Lewisham waste treatment centres

A new report by Kings College London finds that Lewisham borough's waste treatment centres at Mercury Way, near Millwall FC, have a serious effect on air quality in the area around it:

The contribution of the industrial source represented 27% of the mean PM10 daily concentration measured at the AQMS in Lewisham. 

Although the concentration measured met the EU Daily Limit Value, the industrial source increased the number of daily exceedances from 5 to 25 days compared to urban background AQMSs. When wind blew from the waste treatment sites it added on average 18.4 μg∙m‐3 to the PM10 urban background concentration.

This contribution was slightly larger than the one from road‐traffic sources as measured at RB3 (13.7 μg∙m‐3) and at RB4 (13.2 μg∙m‐3). The industrial sources had a marked weekly and daily pattern, with elevated levels from 7 am to 6 pm from Monday to Friday.

The findings were based on measurements taken between February 2010 and September 2011.

The impact on air quality seems to be fairly localised and the comparison with emissions from traffic highlights that pollution from cars is the real challenge for air quality in the capital. But for the residents of neighbouring homes, this raises serious questions.