As for the impact of motoring: Polluting kills!

Last year, the French Environmental Health Safety Agency ( www.afsse.fr ) showed that “from 6500 to 9500 people aged over 30 died in 2002 due to exposure to pollution by fine particles (less than 2,5 microns in size), emitted in particular by cars ".

Today, experts are looking into the case of children and confirm their fears about their greater vulnerability to the nuisances generated by road traffic:

- Young children and adolescents are more vulnerable to the effects of air pollution because their metabolism and physiology are still immature [3],

- being exposed to exhaust gases (in particular diesel vehicles) and living within 500 meters of a bus station multiplies by 12 the risk for a child of dying from cancer [1],

- living near a garage or petrol station could quadruple the risk of childhood leukemia [2],

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- noise has an impact on their cognitive abilities, their motivation and their level of discomfort [3],

- by reducing their physical activity, dependence on the automobile promotes overweight and therefore certain diseases [3],

- in the long term, the density of traffic in residential areas can have an impact by disrupting the development of autonomy and social interaction [3],

- Finally, on the psychological level, moving actively (walking, cycling) reduces the rates of depression, anxiety and aggression [3].

The European study presented by the ADEME [3] proposes numerous political orientations: integrating the health of children at the heart of transport policies, giving priority to the reduction and control of car speed, setting up in schools plans for sustainable mobility management, expanding infrastructure for cyclists, establishing tax incentives, etc.

[1] Pr. Knox (University of Birmingham), 2005, Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health

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[2] Inserm, 2004, Occupational and Environmental Medicine journal

[3] The effects of transport on children's health: towards an integrated assessment of costs and prevention ”, ADEME éditions, January 2005, ref. 5216.

Want to know more? Download the Ademe file

Source: Resistance to Automobile Aggression

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