CONCERNED parents are demanding a solution to the dangerously high air pollution levels, which are putting their children’s health at risk.

North Hinksey Primary School pupils are being exposed to levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) above the legal limit due to the school’s close proximity to the A34.

A letter has been sent to the parliamentary candidates for Oxford West and Abingdon asking them about their policies on air quality.

Dr Rajeka Lazarus has two children at the primary school and said she was ‘angry and worried for the health of not just her children but future generations.’

The 42-year-old who lives off Botley Road added: “This is over 200 children who are being put at risk of reduced lung growth which could lead to long-term health problems.

“The current government has failed to fulfill its legal requirement to ensure that the air that we breathe is safe.

“We are calling for immediate action in Oxford and around the country as all children deserve to breathe clean air.

“We need to have a plan for Oxford as well as the country.”

The legal upper limit of NO2 levels is 40 but within 150 metres of the school levels are as high as 52.1, according to data from Greenpeace.

Dr Lazarus said the problem had multiple strands, which needed addressing including: a lack of public transport, diesel cars, insufficient cycle paths and not enough schools being in walking distance.”

Conservative candidate Nicola Blackwood said if she was elected MP she would support research for innovative methods to monitor air pollution.

She added: “One of the big challenges is air pollution and we need to understand the long term health consequences we are creating when we do not take action.

“We need to have better monitoring to understand the risks and implications that come as a result of air pollution.

“One of the best examples of this was when I was at an exhibition in Oxford and there were young entrepreneurs who designed a monitor to attach to a bike - this is the type of 21st Century thinking we need.”

Layla Moran, the Liberal Democrat candidate, said it was a national problem and if elected she would push for a national air pollution plan.

She said: “We will push for a proper study of air pollution in this area and push government to stop putting it off.

“We need to understand how to stop it. It is a really important issue.”

Speaking on behalf of Labour candidate Marie Tidball at a hustings on Thursday, Oxford City Councillor Alex Hollingsworth suggested a zero emission zone for Oxford.

And Alan Harris, UKIP candidate, advocated for more electric cars on the A34 to help reduce the alarmingly high levels.