Death from above - are you for or against?

Dan Miller: [after the car runs out of gas] Well, we gave it a good shot. Nobody can say we didn't. 
- The Mist

The area under consideration

Lewisham Council is asking residents of Honor Oak and Brockley to tell them whether they would like to suffer from respiratory diseases or not:. For the launch of a new consultation about air quality in the area, they say:

Where levels are being exceeded at a specific location, a computer model is used to predict the extent of the area that is above the target. Monitoring data and modelling shows that areas around Brockley Rise, Stondon Park and Honor Oak Park are failing to meet the standards for nitrogen dioxide. As a result the Council is now obliged to declare an Air Quality Management Area covering these locations as a minimum.

However the Council can choose to extend the Air Quality Management Area beyond these locations. This is particularly relevant when dealing with modelled data which has a degree of error associated with it. It is also useful to consider that actions focused on a small geographical area have the potential to simply displace the problem. Once the Air Quality Management Area is designated, the Council will produce an action plan for the area setting out the measures and policies it will use to deliver improvements.

To tackle the specific problem of nitrogen dioxide in the Honor Oak Park and Brockley Rise area (which is largely caused by motor vehicles, but also other forms of combustion such as heating) actions might include the improvement of facilities for cyclists and pedestrians, measures to tackle congestion and requiring that emissions from new developments are reduced.

We are seeking your comments and opinions on three different options for the extent of the area to be designated and into which we will introduce measures to reduce emissions:

Option 1 (pink shading on the map above): The minimum area option that would cover just the areas predicted to exceed the National Air Quality Objective for nitrogen dioxide (40µg/m3 as an annual average).
Option 2 (pink and yellow shading): The minimum area plus a 25 metre ‘buffer’ zone to allow for errors in the predictions.
Option 3 (pink and yellow and green shading): The whole area north of the south circular (A205) that does not already lie within an AQMA.

If you would like to make a comment and/or indicate your preference, please visit

Here's what the Clean Air Trust says about Nitrogen oxide: 

Health Effects: Short-term exposure may cause increased respiratory illness in young children and harm lung function in people with existing respiratory illnesses. Long-term exposure may lead to increased susceptibility to respiratory infection and may cause alterations in the lung. (Nitrogen oxides also can be transformed in the atmosphere to ozone of fine particulate soot - which are both associated with serious adverse health effects.)

Environmental Effects: Nitrogen oxides help form acid rain.

Sources: Cars, trucks and electric power plants are dominant sources. Home heaters and gas stoves can produce nitrogen dioxide inside homes.