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Cycle more and plant trees: Tips to reduce air pollution

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Mabel Oladle Azpiri

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Mabel Olalde Azpiri would like to end public smoking so she can breathe cleaner air in Havana, Cuba

From Ghana to Argentina and London, air pollution is a problem that people want to solve.

As part of the BBC’s So I Can Breathe series, people have been sharing their tips on how to improve the air around them.


For Phoebe, Joylen and Verity, from London, the answer is to stop cutting down trees.

Students at 50 London schools breathe air that exceeds legal pollution limits.

“Toxic air audits” have been announced by the mayor of London to combat the problem.

According to the US Forest Service, trees reduce urban air pollution by only up to 1%, but even this can have significant health benefits.

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Phoebe, Jeylen, Verity

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Phoebe (left), Joylen (centre), Verity (right)

Areej also wants to plant trees in urban areas of Damascus to improve air quality.

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Areej

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Areej and Hala in Damascus

Wood-burning stoves are a cause of high household air pollution levels and have been linked to four million premature deaths annually, according to the World Health Organization.

Adboulie Sey thinks they should be banned from Gambia and solar energy promoted instead.

Africa’s new breed of solar energy entrepreneurs

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Adboulie Sey

A tax on wood stoves is another solution, suggested by Karen Baines on Twitter.

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Karen Baines

Improving how we travel is a common concern.

Adelaide Arthur wants to use her bike more in order to cut pollution in Accra.

Swapping driving for cycling can reduce the number of vehicles on the road emitting pollutants such as carbon monoxide.

Girl guides helping to clean Ghana’s air pollution problem

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Adelaide Arthur

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Adelaide Arthur in Accra, Ghana

Robert Singleton suggests a ban on diesel powered vehicles would go some way to reducing pollution.

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Twitter

Improved public transport is also proposed by Maria Innes in Buenos Aires, and echoed by Oscar Soria, in New York.

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Maria Innes

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Oscar Soria

Mike Hall thinks government schemes to support people buying hybrid or electric cars is one way to encourage more environmentally friendly transport.

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Twitter

And finally Joab Frank Chakhaza wants to limit car imports in Malawi.

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Joab Frank Chakhaza


So I Can Breathe

A week of coverage by BBC News examining possible solutions to the problems caused by air pollution.


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