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The courts must be involved: the quality of air our children breathe is too important to be decided in secret by ministers and the motor trade.”

Justine Thornton, (barrister and visiting professor at University College London, wife of former Labour leader Ed Miliband and incoming Counsel to the Queen), explains the importance of legal action and judicial pressure in taking the government to task and forcing action on air pollution.

“…I hope the courts closely scrutinise the government’s plan. Ten more years of dangerous air pollution in the capital puts a whole generation of children at risk. Judicial review can assist in identifying the political choices made on our behalf in the plan, to better inform public debate about the difficult decisions ahead.

Securing the proper boundary between the role of unelected judges in determining legality, and elected government in determining policy and priorities, is never easy. The supreme court will be fully aware of the sensitivities involved, but equally the court is clearly determined not to allow the government to duck its legal duties to citizens. The quality of the air our children breathe is too important to be decided behind closed doors by the government and vehicle manufacturers.” The Guardian. Read it on

Air pollution at this level for 10 more years will put a generation at risk