Why 'warning labels' have suddenly appeared overnight on petrol pumps in and around Banbury

Protesters spent last night putting the stickers up - and say air pollution levels in Banbury are dangerously high
'Warning labels' on pumps in Bloxham, put there by Doctors for Extinction Rebellion.'Warning labels' on pumps in Bloxham, put there by Doctors for Extinction Rebellion.
'Warning labels' on pumps in Bloxham, put there by Doctors for Extinction Rebellion.

Warning labels have appeared on petrol pumps in and around Banbury as part of a national environmental campaign.

Protesters spent last night putting the stickers up, with graphic images imitating existing cigarette packet health warnings.

The campaign is led by Doctors for Extinction Rebellion are calling for greater transparency about the damage to health caused by fossil fuels.

They said Banbury’s roads are some of the most polluted in Oxfordshire, with Hennef Way recording dangerously high levels of nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter.

A spokesperson for Doctors for Extinction Rebellion said: "Levels on at least three roads in Banbury are well above the legal limit (although obviously levels came down during lockdown thanks to fewer cars on the road).

"Across the country, 40,000 premature deaths each year are caused by vehicle pollution.

"By this morning, August 28, stickers had been placed at nine different petrol stations in and around Banbury.

"The purpose of the action was to convey a clear and overdue health warning without disruption.

"These labels aren’t the first. After years of campaigning by the Swedish Association of Green Motorists, the first “Eco-labels” were put on Swedish fuel pumps on July 6 this year."

A petition has been launched asking parliament to require health warnings to be issued at the point of purchase of fossil fuels - https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/333388

Banbury member of Extinction Rebellion, Berenice Westwood, said: One of our biggest bugbears is five and six litre engine vehicles.

"Cars are a tool for getting from point A to point B, why have they become something akin to a fashion statement?

"I would like to see a heavy tax put on more polluting vehicles, and more incentives to buy cars with smaller engines or electric cars."

Local Banbury teacher Liz Vere added: "Fossil fuel use is an urgent and increasing danger.

The Government needs to put this right to the top of their 'to do' list, for the sake of our health and that of future generations."