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Environment Minister supports Asthma Week

14 March 2005

Environment Minister supports Asthma Week

The Ministry for the Environment’s new national environmental standards, which came into effect in October last year will make a real difference to the quality of the air in towns and cities all over New Zealand, Environment Minister Marian Hobbs said today, noting Asthma Week (15-21 March).

"The standards, the first ever to be introduced in New Zealand, will lead to a significant reduction in the number of hospitalisations and deaths each year caused by the effects of polluted air," Marian Hobbs said.

To help meet the standards the Ministry for the Environment is half way through a one year Warm Homes project, looking at how families can be encouraged to make their homes more energy efficient and to install 'cleaner' heating.

"We know that a major contributor to air pollution is home heating," Marian Hobbs said. "We also know that an energy efficient, warm home has many benefits. Our health improves - especially for those people with respiratory illnesses like asthma. Our energy bill goes down and we improve the quality of the air we breathe. Through this project we aim to make it easier for people to warm up their homes and be good to their health."

ENDS

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