Council Seeks Views on Air Quality
South Tyneside Council is seeking views on potential measures for improving air quality across the Borough.
Consultation for the Local Air Quality Strategy and Action Plan will commence today (Monday 28 February) and will run for 8 weeks. Residents and businesses are being given the opportunity to have their say on the draft Strategy and Plan as well as considerations to remove existing Air Quality Management Areas (AQMAs).
Cllr Ernest Gibson, Lead Member for Area management and Community Safety at South Tyneside Council said: "While air pollution is largely invisible to us, it affects us all and can have a significant impact on our health and the health of our children.
"The draft Local Air Quality Strategy and Action Plan that is being put forward for consultation is aimed at improving air quality right across the borough and making areas healthier for everyone.
"This is a hugely important issue. We have already made significant progress in delivering on our Sustainable South Tyneside Strategy, a refreshed and robust Air Quality Strategy and Plan will help us to reduce emissions outside of council operations right across the borough. The consultation is an opportunity for people to tell us their views and I would urge everyone to get involved and have their say."
Two separate consultations will run alongside one another.
The first is a public consultation on the draft Local Air Quality Strategy and Action Plan which covers four main areas.
· Vehicles and Fuels - to reduce air pollutants associated with road transport
· Spatial Planning - to mitigate the risk that air quality is negatively impacted from development
· Industry - to use regulatory powers to ensure that complies with Pollution Prevention and Control Regulations and the Clean Air Act 1993
· Behaviour Change - to educate and encourage people to make positive changes that will impact on air quality
The objectives set in the strategy and measures and actions outlined in the action plan will help the Council to achieve air quality objectives defined by Government and the World Health Organisation (WHO).
The second consultation is on the removal of existing Air Quality Management Areas (AQMAs) at Boldon Lane and Lindisfarne/ Leam Lane that are already compliant and no longer needed.
Overall measurement of Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) within both AQMAs has demonstrated compliance with national air quality objectives consistently over a five-year period since 2016.
This, the implementation of local transport schemes to reduce car idling and the proposals being brought forward in the Local Air Quality Strategy mean that the areas can be removed.
The consultation will run from Monday 28 February until Sunday 24 April and all residents, workers, students, and businesses in South Tyneside are encouraged to take part at www.southtyneside.gov.uk/haveyoursay People who do not have access to a computer can visit their local library for assistance or hard copies can be printed on request for those who need them at The Word, Hebburn Central and Jarrow Focus.
Responses from the consultation will be used to inform the final Local Air Quality Strategy and Action Plan which will be brought forward later in the year and will meet the Council's priority to invest in the natural and built environment as well as its wider climate change aspirations.