The fight against air pollution and the serious health problems it causes has been given a major boost today after an extra £2 million to help councils reduce Nitrogen Dioxide emissions was announced by Environment Minister Lord Taylor of Holbeach.
51 councils across England will receive funding for a range of projects designed to reduce serious levels of air pollution in our towns and cities.
Environment Minister Lord Taylor of Holbeach said:
“Air pollution is a major problem which can cause serious health issues - from asthma to heart attacks - and it is vital we make every effort to reduce it and improve our nation’s health.
“Traffic emissions - one of the main sources of Nitrogen Dioxide - are often at the root of this problem. Therefore local action designed to tackle local problems will be especially effective.
“The £2 million I am announcing today recognises the pivotal role that our councils play in delivering air quality improvements. I look forward to seeing how their individual projects develop.”
Councils have bid for funding to support a range of projects - from looking at introducing low emission zones, which have been successful in London, to launching public information campaigns to raise awareness of air pollution.
The largest grant of £190,000 will be given to Stockport and Greater Manchester Metropolitan Borough Council to undertake research on the impact that traffic control and low emission vehicles have on Nitrogen Dioxide emissions.
Another issue being tackled by Dudley Council and the London Boroughs of Hackney and Haringey is leaving cars running when parked or stationary. Evidence shows that leaving cars idle when they could be switched off makes a significant contribution to NO2 emissions and this is something that could easily be avoided. This grant will allow these areas to highlight the problem to local residents with a view to encouraging a change in behavior.
Eligibility for the grant was limited to English local authorities with one or more Air Quality Management Areas for NO2 or those authorities where the Government’s national air quality assessment in 2009 identified a high level of NO2 emissions in their area.
The Government hopes that these projects will lead to significant reductions in NO2 emissions over the next twelve months in those areas where urgent change is required.
Local Authorities who received grant funding will be required to provide Defra with a progress report by September next year to monitor the success of each project and how the money is being spent.
1. This grant scheme operates under Section 31 of the Local Government Act 2003.
2. The criteria for the grant period 2011/12 was different from that of previous years in that it is focused on supporting projects which tackle nitrogen dioxide emissions.
3. Below is a full list of the grants that have been issued.
Total amount awarded (£)
Low Emission Zone/Scheme Feasibility Study
Bath & North East Somerset DC
Low Emission Zone Study
Birmingham (West Midlands Group)
Project to define emissions reduction strategies, including LEZ, LES toolkit, green procurement.
LEZ feasibility study for Bradford
Bristol City Council
Bus NO2 emissions reduction
Canterbury City Council
Vehicle Emissions Monitoring Study
Low Emission Strategy
Workplace Cycle Challenge
Chiltern DC **
Chiltern Air Quality Action Plan
Colchester Borough Council
Eco-driving initiatives - ‘Love your car’ campaign
Corporation of London
a) Cityair and b) Idling and awareness campaign
Corporation of London (joint bid - Central London Group - London Boroughs of Westminster, Kensington & Chelsea, Camden and Islington)
Remote sensing of NO2 exhaust emissions from road traffic
Awareness Raising Campaign to reduce idling vehicles
East Hertfordshire DC
The effect of school traffic on air pollution
Gedling ECO Stars
Horsham District Council
Storrington Traffic Fleet Survey & LEZ Feasibility Assessment
Ipswich (joint bid with Suffolk County Council)
Ipswich Transport Fit for the 21st Century - UTMC Component
Leeds City Council
Low Emission Zone Feasibility Study
Leicester City Council
Leicester Bus Emissions Study
Sussex Low Emission Zone feasibility assessment project (2012-2013)
London Borough of Brent (joint bid)
TEEM: Development of a web-enabled, geo-spatial emissions model
London Borough of Camden
a) AQ Health Perceptions Study, and b) Euston Road NO2 monitoring
London Borough of Ealing
Remote sensing of actual vehicle emission in central London. See Corporation of London
London Borough of Greenwich
Promoting uptake of gas vehicles through an interactive database
London Borough of Hackney
Idling Vehicle Project
London Borough of Haringey
Idling Vehicle Campaign
London Borough of Hillingdon
a) Heathrow Air Quality Hotspot Project, and b) Hillingdon Air Quality Hotspot Project
London Borough of Hounslow
Chiswick High Road - achieving air quality compliance
London Borough of Islington
airTEXT continuation project
London Borough of Lewisham
Vehicle Emissions Testing Day and Sustainable Transport Promotion
London Borough of Merton
Smarter Driving Techniques
London Borough of Sutton
Assessment of NO2 levels in vicinity of selected schools
Maidstone Borough Council
Low Emission Zone/Scheme Feasibility Study
Mid Devon DC
Taxi ECO Stars
Newcastle Upon Tyne (joint bid with Gateshead MBC)
Newcastle/Gateshead Low Emission Zone Feasibility Study
Oxford City Council
Propose an assessment framework/emissions tool. Review work being implemented already (LES) - consult with partners to quantify emission reduction
Reading Borough Council
Low Emission Zone Impact Study
Reigate & Banstead Borough Council
Optimisation of traffic signal timings to minimise pollutant concentrations
Sheffield City Council (joint bid with South Yorkshire Group)
Sheffield City Centre Low Emission Zone Study
South Lakeland District Council
Kendal Behavioural Change Project
Towcester Town Centre AQMA
LEZ feasibility study and monitoring
St Albans DC
Quantitative Appraisal of AQAP measures to achieve compliance in AQMA
Stockport MBC - Greater Manchester bid
Impacts of traffic control and low emission vehicles on NO2 concentrations
Victoria Road Corridor
Low Emissions Strategy Feasibility Study
Tender Project: feasibility of introducing LEZs within Warwick District
Traffic management and Low Emission Feasibility Study
Wigan MBC (joint bid with LESP)
Provide evidence to support LES approach and guidance on including LES in AQAPs
York City Council
a) LEZ feasibility study, and b) Fleet Recognition Scheme