People living in poor urban environments are especially likely to be exposed to dangerous levels of air pollution, with nine out of 10 related deaths occurring in low and middle-income countries.
Mukuru, an informal settlement, in Nairobi, Kenya, is a community of over 300,000 residents. Cooking and heating are major sources of indoor air pollution due to a lack of access to clean energy, resulting in people burning fuels like coal and kerosene inside their homes. The burning of waste and industrial emissions are responsible for most of the local outdoor air pollution.
The AIR Network (Action for Interdisciplinary Air Pollution Research) is a multidisciplinary partnership of African and European researchers, led by the Stockholm Environment Institute at the University of York, together with community members from Mukuru. The network was established to engage with the people of Mukuru, to build relationships and trust, and to explore how best to involve local people in making effective community-driven solutions to the issue of air pollution. This blog describes how the AIR Network project collaborated with musicians, MCs, DJs and filmmakers in Mukuru to compose and record songs and videos to spark interest and debate around the issue of air pollution.