Nottingham City Council's air quality plan approved

The government has announced it has approved Nottingham City Council’s new plan to tackle air pollution in Nottingham city centre.

Having worked alongside Defra officials to identify measures to reduce levels of pollution in the shortest possible time and deliver compliance with legal air quality limits, the council now becomes the first local authority to have their air quality plan approved as part of the government’s wider £3.5 billion plan to tackle harmful emissions from road transport across the country.

As part of the plans, the council will retrofit 171 buses with technology to reduce emissions, support an increase in low emission taxis and use new government funding to support the conversion of its own fleet, including replacing heavy, high polluting vehicles such as bin lorries with electric vehicles.

Environment Minister Thérèse Coffey said: “I am delighted to approve Nottingham City Council’s new air quality plan. Air pollution is the top environmental risk to health in the UK and these government-funded plans will clean up the air in the city centre, protecting residents and visitors alike.

“The plans have been finalised thanks to hard work and collaboration - a brilliant example of what can be achieved when local and national government work together towards a common goal. We will continue to work with local authorities across the UK to improve the quality of the air we breathe.”

Sally Longford, Portfolio Holder for Energy and Environment at the council, said: “We worked hard on a plan that would reduce air pollution in the shortest possible time for our citizens, and we’re thrilled this has now been agreed, along with nearly £1m funding for extra measures to support taxi drivers.

“We’re looking forward to progressing these schemes to clean up the city’s buses and taxis, building on our strong track record in improving air quality through investment in sustainable transport, such as the electric tram, our award-winning electric and biogas bus fleets and cycle network. Air pollution is a significant threat to public health today, and road transport emissions are a big part of that. We’re confident we can deliver our plan and go even further to improve the quality of the air in our city.”

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