Barry Sheerman MP warns over ‘seriously polluted atmosphere’ in Parliament

Labour MP has issued a fresh warning over the “seriously polluted atmosphere” in Parliament after spending time wearing a “very sophisticated air quality monitor”.

Barry Sheerman, MP for Huddersfield, raised concerns over the “very polluted” air quality in the House of Commons, which he claimed was “well above WHO (World Health Organisation) standards”.

Making a point of order in the chamber, Barry spoke of the potential risks, adding that “other parts where our staff are working are twice as bad”.

Barry previously warned of the “deeply poisonous” atmosphere around Westminster as he urged action over air pollution while speaking on national Clean Air Day last month.

Addressing Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle, Barry said: “I think you will be interested particularly in this point of order.

“You will know, because I informed you and other people in the House, that I was wearing over the last days a very sophisticated air quality monitor.

“Mr Speaker, I have to say in this chamber, the quality of the air is very polluted, well above WHO standards, and… other parts where our staff are working are twice as bad. It is a seriously polluted atmosphere.

“We’ve got the summer recess coming up. Could I ask you, Mr Speaker, to see if something could be done, short term and then longer term to protect the people that work in this Parliament.”

Sir Lindsay advised Mr Sheerman to write to Conservative MP Sir Charles Walker, who chairs the Administration Committee.

He said: “What I would say is that I know (he’s) been here longer than anyone I can think in this chamber at the moment.

“He knows the best avenues available to him and I know his letter will already be being penned to Sir Charles and the Admin Committee and I’m sure that they will take seriously on board his findings.”

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