Innovate UK – the government’s innovation funding agency – has launched a £5 million competition for projects to address particulate matter emissions.
Funding will be available to organisations who can demonstrate ideas ‘that go beyond exhaust and road vehicle fumes’ Innovate UK said.
Projects could include those that tackle emissions from road vehicle brake and tyre wear or road surface abrasion, industrial equipment and non-road vehicles used on construction sites or refrigeration units in vehicles including vans or HGVs.
Up to 6 projects can get funded contracts for feasibility studies in the first phase, where there is up to £300,000 available.
The best projects will be invited to apply to a second phase, worth £4.5 million, to take their ideas further, develop a prototype and test its effectiveness, Innovate UK has said.
Commenting, British Lung Foundation Director of Policy, Alison Cook said: ”The UK’s poor air quality truly is a public health crisis. We know that air pollution affects us all, and that children, the elderly and people with heart and lung problems are most at risk.
“That’s why finding new solutions to clean up the air we breathe is so important. This competition is a fantastic initiative from Innovate UK and could ultimately result in a healthier future for us all.
“We recently released a report on particulate matter around UK health centres. The findings revealed that over 2,000 hospitals and GPs are in areas of unsafe air pollution according to limits set by the World Health Organisation.
“Particulate pollution is extremely harmful to our health, as the particles are small enough to pass through the lungs and into the bloodstream. It’s not right that hundreds of thousands of patients are breathing in dirty air as they seek medical care, and it shows just how crucial it is that we solve the UK’s pollution problem as soon as possible.”
The competition opens on 12 November 2018, and the deadline to register is at midday on 9 January 2019 – applicants will be notified of their success in February 2019.