National Clean Air Day – 15th June 2017
Environmental Protection UK are supporting the National Clean Air Day on 15th June 2017, coordinated by Global Action Plan.
There are many different ways to take action on National Clean Air Day. To make it easy, the team have identified 5 top tips in three categories: to Reduce how much air pollution you create, Talk to join forces to beat pollution together, and Avoid air pollution and take care of your health and other people’s. Will you pledge to take action on National Clean Air Day?
There are also toolkits for different types of organisations/groups – Schools, Workplace, Community, Healthcare organisations. There is a No idling toolkit and a Social media toolkit to help too.
To support this, Environmental Protection UK has re-launched its public information leaflets on:
Environmental Protection UK also have guidance for local authorities and building developers:
- Land-Use Planning and Development Control: Planning for Air Quality (jointly produced with the IAQM)
- Air Quality and Climate Change: Integrating Policy Within Local Authorities
- Biomass and Air Quality Information for Developers
To mark National Clean Air Day, Environmental Protection UK have today written to the government about the proposed national plan for tackling nitrogen dioxide in our towns and cities. This robust, critical and constructive response urges the Government to be more ambitious in addressing high air pollution, public exposure and the dire impact on human health. Key points are:
- The proposed National Plan for NO2 is inadequate. It does not demonstrate a fast pathway to compliance with the legal limits, nor address the public health impacts from extended exposure to poor air quality.
- When comparing the proposed National Plan against the scale of the problem, it is clear that the National Plan has to go further, in more places, with a wider focus, and with greater ambition and faster implementation, in order to protect human health and ensure that compliance is not just possible, but likely.
- The scope of the National Plan must be widened to be effective. Although road transport is a major source of pollution, it is far from the only source causing or contributing to problems of poor air quality and health. Any National Air Quality Plan should also take into account other sources and pollutants, especially particulates, primary nitrogen dioxide emissions, ozone and carbon dioxide. To exclude these will compromise its effectiveness in the longer term, and decrease the health benefits.
- The National Plan needs direct action by the national government. The sheer quantity of cities, towns, and even villages, with air pollution problems shows that this is a local manifestation of a national problem. An effective national plan must include national actions, as well as regional and local measures to protect human health in as short a time as possible. In addition to the missing ‘air quality’ measures, there are a wide range of other Government initiatives which affect air quality on transport, land us, energy and taxes. These must be optimized to improve air quality, by targeting areas of high pollution, and addressing and relocating work with negative impacts.
- The local elements in the proposed Plan will have no impact unless supported and resourced. The government needs to ensure that clean air is a political priority at all levels of government. There should be a clear national narrative for action to protect and enhance human health through clean air, which is supported with further targeted work at a local level. More commitment is needed for substantial government funding, expert staff, and political support for local authorities to take more action, in both the mandated areas and elsewhere (as the national modelling does not identify all areas of poor pollution). The non-charging Clean Air Zone is essentially a Local Air Quality Management Action Plan, these have not delivered the required improvements over the last decade and will continue to disappoint if not properly funded and supported.
This is the first ever National Clean Air Day. Environmental Protection UK are also proud to have been the organisers of the annual Noise Action Week for over 15 years, this took place this year on 22-26 May 2017.
Environmental Protection UK is a national charity that provides expert policy analysis and advice on air quality, land quality, waste and noise and their effects on people and communities in terms of a wide range of issues including public health, planning, transport, energy and climate. It is a membership association of local authorities, their advisors, suppliers and independent environmental bodies, businesses and concerned individuals. If you would like to become a member of EPUK to help us make a difference, please get in touch.