Council committed to work with others to improve air quality

Release Date: 18 September 2017

A new steering group with Council and community representatives, could be set up to help ensure that measures are put in place to improve air quality across the borough.

As part of a new proposed Air Quality Action Plan (AQAP), the Council is making a number of recommendations, including the establishment of a long-term Air Quality steering group, made up of Councillors, Council officers, businesses and community groups. The group will ensure that the implementation of AQAP measures is coordinated effectively between relevant council services and external partners.

The proposed AQAP is a statutory document that outlines how the Council will work to improve air quality across the borough.

The Council is currently inviting the views of residents and stakeholders over the next six weeks.

Other proposals within the plan include:

  • Identifying the key causes of traffic congestion and pollution ’hotspots’ and to determine effective measures for improving traffic flow through those areas using detailed air quality and traffic management modelling tools.
  • Providing guidance to developers on the impact of development on air quality and ensure that approved schemes include effective mitigation and maximise the opportunity to improve infrastructure for sustainable transport options.
  • Encouraging the uptake of low emission vehicles through expansion of the electric vehicle charging infrastructure.
  • Formalising anti-idling enforcement in order to minimise emission from vehicles around key locations such as schools, level crossings, taxi-ranks, air quality focus areas and hot-spots.
  • Continue working with schools, parents and students to improve awareness of air quality and to optimise parents’ and children’s desire and opportunity to adopt sustainable travel options.

Richmond Council Cabinet Member for Environment, Cllr Pamela Fleming, said:

“Air Quality and local pollution is one of the most important challenges we face as a Council. The evidence is now clear of the health implications for people in Richmond upon Thames, in particular those suffering from underlying medical conditions.

“We have a duty to try to address pollution and work closely with external partners to tackle this problem head on.

“I think it’s very important to highlight that poor air quality is a responsibility of us all, not just something that governments and authorities are responsible for. Almost everything we do impacts on local air quality; from the cars we drive, how we use them, the heating and insulation in our homes, our holidays and travel and even the way in which we use next day deliveries for non-urgent good and services.

“I believe that this Action Plan outlines what we can do together, as a community, to tackle this important issue.”

Give your views

Consultation ends on Monday 30 October.

 

Notes for editors

If you are a journalist and would like further information about this press release, contact Elinor Firth on 020 8487 5159.

Reference: P426/17

Updated: 2 October 2017