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HM Treasury has been aware since October 2004 of the potential NHS savings of £24 billion per annum by reducing industrial emissions of PM2.5s as implemented by the US Clean Air Act.

HM Treasury failed to reply to Paul Marsden MP, passing the buck to DEFRA. Elliot Morley MP's response to Paul Marsden MP ignored all of the financial implications raised in Michael Ryan's letter of 30 September 2004 (opposite).


border image The fiscal prudence of reducing industrial PM2.5 pollution border image

Paul Marsden MP
1B St Mary's Street,

30 September 2004
Dear Paul,

The fiscal prudence of reducing industrial PM2.5 pollution

I should be grateful if you would ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whose name has been associated with fiscal prudence, why the Treasury has not forced UK industry to reduce the deadly industrial emissions of PM2.5s [particles of 2.5 microns diameter and below, which are small enough to get into lungs] despite the proven savings of $193 billion over the ten years 1992-2002 from reduced hospital visits and fewer days off work in the US. The USEPA enforced PM2.5 standards from 1997, so savings will increase.

The above savings were calculated by the White House Office of Management and Budget and reported, at length, in the Washington Post article "Study finds net gain from pollution rules" dated 27 September 2003, which I've enclosed.

For every £1 spent on reducing emissions of PM2.5s, there is a £6 saving in reduced NHS costs and £4 saving in social security costs. Most people in the UK understand the BOGOF concept, ie "buy one, get one free" when shopping and would love the opportunity of getting £10 back for every £1 spent. They would look askance at any Chancellor, or government, who ignored such good sense as reported in the above Washington Post article [also OKOPOL EC Report 1999] especially when the savings would be accompanied by less illness, longer lives and higher productivity.

I should be grateful if you would put the following questions to the Chancellor of the Exchequer:

1. Is he aware of the massive, proven savings from reducing industrial emissions of PM2.5s?

2. Does he propose to copy the US emission controls, and if so when?

3. If the UK government has no intention of effectively reducing industrial emissions of PM2.5s, could he please detail the financial mechanism(s), including excess taxation, he has in place to:

i) make up for the loss of approx. £24 billion a year in health costs
ii) provide adequate compensation for avoidable illness from the millions of UK citizens harmed by government neglect, despite the 1985 commitment to the World Health Organisation to reduce mortality inequalities in the UK.

Yours sincerely,

Michael Ryan

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