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Air pollution could contribute to over 15,000 deaths in East

The charity has launched a campaign called Credit: PA

The number of heart attacks and stroke deaths connected to toxic air could reach 15,000 across the East of England in the next decade, a charity is warning.

The British Heart Foundation is calling for stricter air pollution limits as it launches a new awareness campaign.

The county with the highest number of estimated deaths is Essex at 4,900.

  • Beds 1,400
  • Cambs 1,900
  • Essex 4,900
  • Herts 2,400
  • Norfolk 3,000
  • Suffolk, 2,300
Credit: ITV News Anglia

The British Heart Foundation says air pollution presents a 'major public health emergency' which must be urgently addressed by the new Government.

It is calling for World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines on particulate matter (PM) to be adopted in to UK law and met by 2030.

Credit: ITV News Anglia
15,000
deaths in the next decade, just here in the East of England because of toxic air

The call comes as the charity has launched a hard-hitting campaign, 'You're full of it', to highlight that we're all unwittingly inhaling dangerous levels of particulate matter air pollution in towns and cities across the UK every day.

It's estimated that up to 11,000 heart and circulatory disease deaths are attributable to particulate air pollution in the UK every year.

Credit: ITV News Anglia

Every day, millions of us across the country are inhaling toxic particles which enter our blood and get stuck in our organs, raising our risk of heart attacks and stroke. Make no mistake - our toxic air is a public health emergency, and we haven't done enough to tackle this threat to our society.

We need to ensure that stricter, health-based air quality guidelines are adopted into law to protect the health of the nation as a matter of urgency. Clean Air legislation in the 1950s and 60s, and more recently the smoking ban in public places, show that government action can improve the air we breathe.

Decision makers across the country owe it to future generations to help stop this alarming figure from becoming a reality. That's why we are urging people to contact their MP and demand a change in the law.

– Jacob West, Executive Director of Healthcare Innovation at the British Heart Foundation