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April 2018 Headlines       Issue 144

Funding packages set out

Government has set out more details of funding of air quality plan measures.

Resignations follow weak Scottish plans

Environmentalists in Scotland have resigned from a government low emission zone steering group claiming there is a lack of ambition.

Derby once again admonished

Derby is trailblazing – by testing Government on what it will do to authorities that are not doing as they are told on air quality.

Woodsmoke triggers ‘high’ days

Moderate and high particle pollution was measured throughout London and the south on Friday 2nd to Saturday 3rd March 2018, and also across large parts of the UK and western Europe, says King’s College London.

Cambridge continues to target buses

Buses remain the focus in Cambridge City Council’s latest air quality action plan. While taxis and trucks will be affected, the bus focus is despite disappointing results having targeted buses in the first action plan.

Direct action targets London City Hall

Activists have targeted City Hall in London in their latest high profile wheeze.
Clean air defenders from Stop Killing Londoners have repeatedly sprayed City Hall with graffiti last month, unsurprisingly many were arrested. They say they are prepared to go to prison unless Mayor Sadiq Khan does more.

NPPF consultation

Westminster is consulting on a new English National Planning Policy Framework.

Emissions ahead

An emissions inventory trumpets the rapid drop in UK emissions in recent decades – but last year ammonia went up.

ET win

Upgrade of the automatic monitoring network (AQB Feb p5) has led to further wins.

Scrappage rejected in NO2 plan

Government has published conclusions and a summary of responses to the consultation on the NO2 plan. A national scrappage scheme has been ruled out.

Clean air fund

Linked to the above is more details on how councils can get money out of the Clean Air Fund over the period of 2018/19 to 2020/21: “It is our intention that successful local authorities will receive the funding award from the Clean Air Fund at the same time as they are awarded funding from the Implementation Fund.

Brighton loses with tucked-away monitors

Brighton councillors have written to Government claiming national modelling assessments has left the city behind in the national push to improve air.

LEZ responses

A new report samples responses to the Building Scotland’s low emission zones consultation which sought feedback on the Scottish Government’s proposals to introduce LEZs in Scotland.

Emulator fine

Another truck operator has been disqualified for systematic fiddling of emissions.

New PM sensor

Alphasense has launched a new version of its optical particle counter.

Overheating – beware of sealed windows

Acousticians have put together a guide on sealed-up windows and the need to avoid overheating.

English air quality grant released

One week before the end of the 2017/18 financial year, English authorities get to hear who officially wins 2017/18 funding.
This year’s grant totals £2.4m – last year the total was £3.7m (AQB March p13).

New planning policy for Wales

Wales’ Wellbeing Act is full of good intentions – it will be through planning that they can be realised, finds Jack Pease

Chief medical officer wades in

The chief medical officer has published an annual report which focuses on air quality (and noise). Jack Pease reports

Heathrow damage costs dominate

Transport committee MPs have carried out an unusually technical examination of plans to expand Heathrow contained in the Airports NPS.

Superinquiry demands more action

The MPs ‘super-inquiry’ has concluded. Like the numerous MPs’ committees’ reports before it, it wants more action, finds Jack Pease