Covid induced lockdowns generated reduced air pollution through vehicular emissions.
Rush hours in all areas are exacerbated by school transport issues caused by government policies on freedom of choice for schooling combined with charges for school transport if the nearest school is not selected. Public transport policies charge students full fares rather than concessionary, which leads to the child benefit allowances often being swallowed whole by school transport costs. Having more than one child in the family means that it becomes economically viable for parents to drive their children to school thus increasing the volume of traffic in rush hour times as well as extending the afternoon rush hour, leading to increased air pollution. A further consequence is for a larger proportion of the population being unaccustomed to publc transport. For poorer families, not on income support, the only option is for children to choose the nearest school, not perhaps the one that would optimise their academic progress.