Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Tree planting could reduce Henley pollution

HENLEY in Bloom has been praised for its plan to reduce pollution in the town by planting silver birch trees.

HENLEY in Bloom has been praised for its plan to reduce pollution in the town by planting silver birch trees.

The group is considering planting the trees in Duke Street and Northfield End as their leaves are covered in tiny hairs and ridges that trap pollution particles.

The idea was suggested by committee member Caroline Langler after she saw the trees used during an experiment on the BBC?s Trust Me I?m A Doctor. The programme showed Michael Mosley and surgeon Gabriel Weston set up a row of 24 young silver birch trees in tubs along the pavement of the A9 in Lancaster.

Behind the trees were four terraced houses and, next to those, four identical terraced houses without trees outside.

After two weeks, pollution in the houses with trees was 50 to 60 per cent lower than in those without.

Speaking at a meeting of Henley Town Council?s recreation and amenities committee, resident David Dickie praised the idea. Mr Dickie, of St Katherine?s Road, Henley, said: ?I would like to see Henley in Bloom continue with their project. It has worked very well in Lancashire and I would like to see it implemented in Henley.?

Henley has some of the highest pollution levels in South Oxfordshire caused by traffic. In June, the average annual reading of nitrogen dioxide in the town was 62.4 micrograms per cubic metre, compared with the 40mcm objective set by Air Quality England.

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