Return to Website

Number Watch Web Forum

This forum is about wrong numbers in science, politics and the media. It respects good science and good English.

Number Watch Web Forum
Start a New Topic 
View Entire Thread
Re: Pollution deaths

I noticed this news story about the UK Liberal Democrat party proposing in their manifesto for the forthcoming General Election in a few weeks time to introduce a ban on the sale of diesel cars and small vans. Also mentioned in the article is that they propose to legalise cannabis and use it as a new tax revenue stream.

Lib Dems

At first sight that doesn't look particularly inconsistent, cracking down on pollution and a relaxed attitude to cannabis use are long-established left-liberal hobbyhorses. However the intention behind banning diesel cars is in large part a desire to protect the public from exposure to PM2.5 fine particulate matter. The legalisation of cannabis by a government would mean that it effectively approves of the idea of exposing a section of the public to far greater amounts of PM2.5 than they would experience from air pollution. According to Steven Milloy, smoking a marijuana joint could result in 18,000 times as much exposure to PM2.5 as a person breathing outdoor air for an hour: