What do you think about air pollution in Leeds?

3rd January, 2018 - 15:54


Leeds City Council is looking for people living, working and commuting in Leeds and the wider region to have their say on proposals to reduce air pollution and protect the health of people in the city. The public consultation opened on 2 January and runs until 2 March 2018.

Why we need to reduce air pollution

We can’t always see it but air pollution has serious implications for our health. Evidence shows that spending time in areas with high levels of air pollution can worsen asthma symptoms, damage lung function and is linked with an estimated 40,000 premature deaths in the UK every year.

Public responses to the consultation will shape the council’s final air quality proposal which will be presented to the government later in the year.

The final proposal will need to allow the city to comply with national air quality levels in the shortest possible timescale whilst considering the overall impact on Leeds—including financial impacts, inequality and the displacement of emissions to other areas.

What is Leeds City Council currently doing?

In order for Leeds to meet air quality standards in the shortest possible timescale, Leeds City Council is doing its part to clean up the city’s air. Actions include:

◾Leading the way in transitioning its fleet of vehicles to ultra-low or zero emissions vehicles. Currently, Leeds City Council have more low emissions vehicles than any other local authority in England

◾Investing in public transport and cycling infrastructure to make it easier to leave the car at home and use less polluting ways to travel

◾Encouraging drivers to switch to ultra-low emissions vehicles by offering residents free parking for ULEVS in the city centre at council car parks and supporting the development of charge points across the city for electric vehicles.

How does the consultation work?

The three-part  consultation asks businesses, both regionally and nationally, commuters and those living in the wider Leeds region to let Leeds City Council know their thoughts on the proposals for improving air quality in the city, so that the Council can meet national air quality standards in the shortest possible timescale. 

Part 1: Proposal for a charging Clean Air Zone in Leeds

If Leeds is to meet air quality standards as soon as possible it is likely that a charging Clean Air Zone will need to be introduced. The Council's proposed Clean Air Zone would charge buses, HGVs, taxis and private hire vehicles that fail to meet the latest emissions standards for entering the city. Part 1 asks for your views on how the proposed Clean Air Zone could affect you and whether some vehicles should receive a discounted charge.

Part 2: What else should Leeds City Council do to improve air quality?

On its own, a Clean Air Zone gets us very close but won’t be enough to comply with national air quality standards in the shortest possible timescale. Part 2 asks for views on additional proposals Leeds City Council could take to improve air quality in the city as soon as possible.

Part 3: What could you do to improve air quality?

A city-wide effort will be needed if Leeds is to clean up our air and comply with national emissions standards as soon as possible. Part 3 seeks to find out what you are already doing and what further action you could take to reduce your own personal contribution to air pollution.

To complete this consultation questionnaire until 2 March 2018  click this link.