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A toxic air alert has been issued in London this week

Alexandra Sims

News of the pollution levels in our smog-filled city hasn’t been great of late. Just five days into 2017, London breached its yearly air pollution limit, and now things have just been cranked up to a whole new level. Sadiq Khan has just put London on toxic air alert for at least three days and warned that Londoners face a ‘public health emergency’. Blimey.

Air pollution is set to hit a ‘high peak’ in central parts of the capital, including Westminster and the Square Mile, after rising to ‘moderate’ in 17 boroughs. An airtext forecast sent out by the Mayor suggests some of London’s busiest roads will be hit with ‘high’ pollution on all three days.

The Mayor of London, who’s pledged to spend a whopping £875 million on London's pollution problem, said: ‘London’s dirty air is a public health emergency. We will continue to use all the technology at our disposal to inform Londoners about levels of air pollution in their neighbourhoods.’

And official advice from the Department for the Environment isn't too reassuring. They’ve told older people and anyone with lung problems, asthma or heart problems to reduce strenuous physical activity outdoors on 'moderate' and 'high' air pollution days, while anyone experiencing sore eyes, a cough or sore throat should also advised to reduce their physical activity when levels are 'high'.  

In the meantime, if you haven’t invested in one of those weird masks yet, there’s a handy app that'll let you know if you're about to succumb to a pollution-related illness. So, that should (sort of) help you breathe a little easier.

On the plus side, pollution levels are decreasing on Oxford Street

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