TUCAN (Trade Union Clean Air Network) Newsletter No 2, Spring 2020:
LTBs No. 035/2019 and 436/19 reported on the launch of the Trade Union Clean Air Network (TUCAN), launched as part of the ‘Hazards Campaign’ and linked to the ‘Greener Jobs Alliance (GJA)’, working to generate worker/trade union awareness and a for the trade union voice to be prominent in the public debate on the issue of air pollution, waste, the environment and climate change. TUCAN has joined the fight against air pollution and occupational health damage as concerns continue to grow. Much air pollution is caused by industry and work-related activities. Climate change and damage to the environment are direct consequences. There is rightly a public outcry about air pollution as a public health emergency. 36,000 deaths a year are caused by air pollution, according to a government report. Outdoor workers have been ignored for too long as the pollution crisis deepens. Government strategy however has been essentially to ‘kick the can down the road’ by delaying vital measures or passing it over to local authorities to sort out.
‘TUCAN developed a ‘Charter’ providing a set of demands for unions to prioritise in campaigns at local, regional, national and international level. TUCAN also developed – ‘Guidance on Air Pollution for Union Reps’, a pollution checklist for health, safety and environment reps and the ‘TUCAN Charter’ promoting best practice and to raise awareness.
The ‘TUCAN Charter’:
- Introduce a new Clean Air Act that enshrines the right to breathe clean air.
- Update Health and Safety Law (such as COSHH).
- Ensure effective enforcement.
- Involve the workforce.
- Protect jobs.
- Rapidly expand clean and inexpensive public transport systems alongside investment in active transport to increase levels of cycling and walking.
Please find attached a copy of the TUCAN Newsletter No.2, Spring 2020 edition, which covers the following subjects:
- TUCAN to help investigate air pollution problems at the workplace
- Union action on toxic tube dust
- Brake dust possibly as harmful as diesel fumes to immune cells
- BFAWU calls for action on drive through worker exposure
- New environment bill
- Outdoor worker exposure in London
- Airborne nanoparticles risk greater than thought
- Air pollution shortens lifespan by three years
- GJA sets priorities for 2020
- NASA shows China slow down reduced NO2 pollution
- Do you want a TUCAN speaker?
TUCAN Newsletter No 2, Spring 2020
National Health, Safety & Environment Officer