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Paris, Mexico City, Madrid and Athens mayors agree to phase out diesel-powered cars and trucks by 2025 to help improve air quality

Press release   •   Dec 02, 2016 12:25 UTC

Europe's highways and city streets are full of cars and trucks fueled by diesel, a fuel increasingly being blamed for health-threatening emissions.

Stockholm, Sweden, December 2, 2016 – Blueair today said a decision by city leaders in Athens, Madrid, Mexico City, and Paris at a meeting in Mexico on Thursday to clamp down on the use of diesel fuel is a significant step forward in tackling air pollution and traffic. Bengt Rittri, who founded Blueair twenty years ago and has nurtured the company into a world air purification leader with sales in over 60 countries, said he applauds every initiative that helps to reduce the deadly impact of air pollution on people’s health.

“WHO says over seven million people die prematurely every year as a result of exposure to outdoor air pollution, which is sadly just the tip of the iceberg regarding the overall wellbeing consequences for society of breathing bad air outside and indoors,” Bengt Rittri said. He noted how a study by Germany’s Stuttgart University, commissioned by Greenpeace in 2013, concluded that European business and organizations lost up to five million working days yearly because of illnesses, such as asthma and heart attacks, linked to pollution from coal-fired power plants.

WHO has pointed out that the risks from indoor and outdoor air pollution are now far greater than previously thought or understood, particularly for heart disease and strokes. The organisation says indoor air pollution causes strokes, heart disease, COPD, acute lower respiratory infections in children, and lung cancer.

The Blueair Friend App, available for both Apple and Android mobile devices, empowers people around the world to learn about their outdoor air quality in real time, and recommends what measures a user can take to stay healthy. The Friend app gathers data from over 2,700 air quality monitoring stations in 150 countries to ensure access to trustworthy information on air quality, which is rated from 0 to 500, from ‘good’ to ‘hazardous’.

“It is signification news that the mayors of four major global cities have committed to halting within nine years the use of diesel-power cars and trucks that produce particulate matter and nitrogen oxides that can penetrate deep into the lungs to cause cardiovascular and respiratory diseases,” Bengt Rittri said.

Background:

-The European Environment Agency has said that in some of Europe’s cities such as Paris and London, levels of NO2, which have been blamed for exacerbating the risk of heart attacks and triggering asthma and bronchitis, often exceed the European Union legal limits.

-Briton’s capital city London has had air quality warnings put in place at 2,500 bus stops, all 270 Tube stations and on 140 signs next to the capital's busiest roads to warn of "high pollution levels".

-According to International Council on Clean Transportation, diesel engines power the dominant share of goods movement, construction equipment, and public transport vehicles in the global economy. It cites a report by the Climate and Clean Air Coalition, which says 85% of road transportation is powered by diesel engines; and that diesel engines are significant sources of PM2.5 – and in many cities the major source.

For more information, please contact David Noble, Blueair head of global public relations, at +44 7785 302 694 or david.noble@blueair.se

Sold in over 60 countries around the world, Blueair delivers home and office users more clean indoor air for enhanced user health and wellbeing faster than any competing air purifier thanks to its commitment to quality, energy efficiency and environmental care. A Blueair air purifier works efficiently, silently to remove 99.97% of allergens, asthma triggers, viruses, bacteria and other airborne pollutants.