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16ft installation – ‘LONDON’S LUNGS’ – unveiled by E.ON to make air pollution visible

Thursday 19th September: A giant pair of lungs, filling, in near-real time, with coloured smoke representing some of the toxic gases that Londoners breathe every day, has been erected on London’s South Bank to mark the start of a new initiative for E.ON.

The innovative campaign by ENGINE aims to further heighten awareness of air quality as an issue and to showcase how E.ON and its customers are helping to deliver solutions that can help to clear the air.

Air pollution is fast emerging as one of the UK’s most serious health issues1. Recent research links the presence of particulates and polluting gases to health issues such as strokes, lung and heart disease, and 40,000 premature deaths a year. In fact, air pollution contributes to 1 in 20 UK deaths2.

Energy use is a key contributor. Some of the major sources of toxic air are diesel and petrol vehicles, inefficient home heating systems and fossil fuelled power stations.

Over recent years, E.ON has increasingly focused on bringing innovative clean energy technologies such as solar, storage batteries and air source heat pumps to the consumer market, investing in building a network of electric vehicle charge points across Europe to encourage more drivers to switch away from diesel and petrol, and recently announced its customers’ home electricity supplies are backed by 100% renewable sources.

For business customers, E.ON consults on a range of services to help industry reduce energy waste and carbon emissions while securing their energy supplies by generating their own power on site. At a greater scale the company is also delivering new heating, electricity and e-mobility solutions to help build smarter, more sustainable cities and communities.

‘LONDON’S LUNGS’ has been created to make the invisible visible and demonstrate current levels of air pollution affecting us all. Erected on the banks of the River Thames at Potters Field Park near Tower Bridge, the giant lungs are connected to a live feed of air quality data from Greater London and fill up with different coloured smokes to represent Nitrogen Dioxide, Sulphur Dioxide and noxious PM2.5 particles – three of the major pollutants which we breathe in daily3.

Belinda Moore, Director of Marketing & Communications at E.ON UK, says: “Air pollution and climate change are driving a clear deterioration in public health but the causes often go unseen or unnoticed. With our LUNGS installation we wanted to make an obvious – and in some way shocking – visual statement to bring poor air quality to life.

“Energy is at the heart of solving these challenges and at E.ON we want to lead the energy transformation, creating a smart, sustainable and personalised energy world with and for our customers. People want to be part of the change we need and with the challenge of air pollution brought to life by our LUNGS activation it’s vital we help them to take a stand, both in terms of highlighting the problem and taking action to deliver tangible solutions. The UK Government’s Clean Air Strategy and the ‘net zero’ 2050 target are important steps forward, by working together with government, businesses and consumers we believe we can focus minds and work towards a better, cleaner future for all.”

The campaign has been unveiled by E.ON ahead of the week-long Global Climate Strike (20th- 27th September) and London Car Free Day (22nd September). Following the London display there will be further activity bringing to life some of the clean air solutions that E.ON provides for people, businesses and communities.

The initiative also includes stakeholder engagement via a whitepaper which details E.ON’s stance and policy suggestions on this issue, PR, print, radio, out of home and digital advertising – showcasing ENGINE’s unique ability to create a campaign that integrates earned, owned and bought media.

Rob Carter, Client Managing Director at ENGINE Creative, says: "The subject of air pollution has been steadily gaining traction but E.ON wanted to accelerate this by making it very real and personal for the public. Our multi-disciplined agency model has meant we could achieve this with a tight-knit team of best-in-class specialists ,working closely with E.ON, to craft the message revolving around the lungs as a dramatic centrepiece. The campaign has been carefully orchestrated around a very single-minded strategy and creative thought, ensuring each channel plays to its strengths to land a serious message with maximum relevance and earned exposure over time."

Visit or search ‘E.ON Clean Air’ to find out how being energy efficient can help clean the air and how E.ON solutions can help tackle the issue of air pollution.


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