The Mayor puts this line in a nice prominent position in his press release:
Poor air quality worsens asthma and causes the premature death of an estimated 1,000 people each year in London.
The Mayor’s 265 PRs are not silly. They know that some dumb journalist is going to get the wrong end of the stick and write this is up as Mayor saves 1,000 a year. Sure enough the BBC oblige here in bold in the opening line of their piece this morning:
It is a measure aimed at saving up to 1,000 lives a year.
The Transport for London background documents tell a much more modest story. See Section 4.41, page 35 of this report:
The Defra methodology estimates that the proposed LEZ scheme would prevent between 5200 and 5500 years of lost life expectancy lost across London, that 86 hospital admissions would be avoided and roughly 40 deaths brought forward would be avoided. The CAFE methodology predicts 65 hospital admissions be avoided. The CAFE methodology also expresses years of life lost in an alternative format, as premature deaths, and predicts that the LEZ will lead to 210 fewer premature deaths.
I guess the BBC is voting for Livingstone then.
3:00 pm Update: Their TV commentary here repeats the 1,000 number as if this has anything to do with the scheme.