Scotland’s Most Polluted Street

Despite having one of the lowest levels of car ownership in Britain, the Glasgow Urban Area ranks the fourth highest for illegal air pollution in the UK. Glaswegians are 25 times more likely to die from respiratory illnesses caused by vehicle emissions than by being involved in a car crash. One of the biggest hot-spots that contributes to these statistics is Hope Street, which topped the most polluted roads in Scotland in 2019. The high density of buildings along Hope Street and the surrounded area reduces the dispersion of pollutants caused by traffic – particularly the number of heavily polluting buses that use Hope Street – which contributes to air pollution levels of 56.6 micrograms of nitrogen dioxide per cubic metre (µg m-3) – 16.6µg m-3 over the legal limit. This being said, the city has introduced Scotland’s first Low Emissions Zone across the city centre in order to tackle pollutions levels caused by traffic, with all buses having to meet low emissions by end of 2022.


Key Themes: Well-being