Air quality concerns on the rise

Internet searches relating to air pollution have increased 750% in the UK in the last decade, according to the producer of the world’s best-selling electric car.

Nissan, which produces the LEAF, found that the popularity of search terms ‘best air purifier’ and ‘air quality index’ both rose by a factor of 750% from August 2006 to August 2016 whilst the phrase ‘air pollution facts’ climbed 350% over the same period.

With the World Health Organisation recently declaring that more than 80% of people living in urban areas that monitor air pollution are exposed to air quality levels that exceed the WHO limits, the problem is a global one.

In response, Nissan has stepped up its own commitment to zero emissions by exploring technology that will contribute towards a greener, more sustainable environment. There are now almost 230,000 Nissan LEAFs on the road worldwide, and in 2015 the company announced it had saved 50 million kg of carbon emissions in Europe alone with sales of the LEAF.

Beyond production of the Nissan LEAF and e-NV200 LCV, Nissan has announced a major partnership with energy provider Enel to trial vehicle-to-grid technology across Europe that will turn electric vehicles into clean mobile energy units, able to put energy back into the grid as well as take from it.

Nissan has also confirmed plans to move into the residential home energy storage market, with the launch of its ‘xStorage’ unit in Europe later this year in partnership with power management firm, Eaton. The system will not only give Nissan electric vehicle batteries a ‘second life’, but will also provide a fully integrated energy storage solution that will put energy management and distribution back in the hands of the consumer.

Gareth Dunsmore, head of electric vehicles, Nissan Europe said, ‘For so long now, air pollution has been seen as a problem that affects people on the other side of the world. This is a flawed perception because air pollution is impacting people and cities right here in Europe. Everyone has a role to play, ourselves included, but by investing in zero emission technologies and putting a stake in the ground about how we can help people live healthier, smarter, greener lives, we hope it’s a step in the right direction.’