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Pupils lead project to get parents to switch off engines at the school gates

ENVIRONMENTALLY MINDED pupils at Neyland Community School are encouraging parents and carers to ‘No Idle’ and tackle air pollution at the school gates.
The School’s Eco Warriors Group is running a campaign to get parents and carers to shut off car engines as they wait to drop-off or pick-up pupils.
Or, even better, leave the car at home wherever possible.
The No Idle campaign comes as the UK marks Clean Air Day (16th June) which aims to draw attention to air pollution and the simple steps we can all take to reduce emissions.
Following a meeting with Pembrokeshire County Council Pollution Control Officer Nathan Miles, where Nathan explained how petrol and diesel vehicles are a major source of air pollution, the Eco Warriors have leapt into action.
The Eco Warriors Pupil Voice Group said: “We are committed to making positive contributions to the major challenges that we face in today’s world and we were delighted to meet with Nathan.
“This scheme has a simple and important objective: To reduce car emissions outside our school during the busy drop-off and ‘pick-up’ times at the beginning and end of each school by ensuring car and vehicle engines are turned off when dropping off and picking up children.
“We launched this scheme this week, we have a banner outside our school and our group are outside ensuring the success of this scheme.
“We speak to parents about its aims, and it has been well received with parents supporting us in this important mission.”
Nathan added: “It is great to see the pupils take the lead on this project on a subject which affects them day in day out at the school gates and I’d also like to thank Gareth Lawlor from area maintenance for the support in setting up the scheme.
“I am sure we are all guilty of leaving the engine on when waiting for someone, or taking the car on a short trip when we could walk or cycle instead.
“By turning off the engine while waiting or leaving the car at home we can all do our bit to improve the air we all breathe.”
Cllr Michelle Bateman, Cabinet Member for Housing and Regulatory Services, said: “I am very proud of the pupils from Neyland Community School for leading the way on this work.
“Turning off our car engines when we wait is such a simple message and something we can all do.
“I hope this message can spread far and wide across Pembrokeshire schools to improve air quality across the County.”
County Councillor Simon Hancock is the local member.
He backed the project’s aims and congratulated the pupils on their work.
“Neyland Community School is setting an example to us all with this project.
“These pupils are the generation that will grow up with the greatest risks from climate change unless we all take small steps towards a big global cut in emissions.
“What starts outside the school gates can really have a long-term and lasting impact on our environment.”