Laura Sharman 10 December 2020

Councils warned to push ahead with clean air zones

Air pollution exceeds pre-pandemic levels in 80% of places despite continued lockdown restrictions, new research has uncovered today.

A study by the Centre for Cities found that some cities such as Barnsley, Bournemouth and Portsmouth actually had higher NO2 levels in September compared to before the first lockdown.

It is calling on councils to push ahead with stalled pollution reduction plans in order to avoid a significant drop in air quality next year.

The research shows that home working is not enough to keep air pollution low because remote workers are more likely to use their car for leisure purposes and not for commuting. 

Centre for Cities’ chief executive Andrew Carter said: ‘Toxic air has contributed to the deaths of thousands of COVID-19 victims this year and, even after the pandemic ends, will remain a big threat to health – particularly for those living in urban areas.

’City leaders can reduce the threat of air pollution, but it will take political will. Discouraging car usage will be unpopular in the short-term but, if coupled with the necessary improvements to public transport, the long-term benefits to public health and the economy will be huge and our cities will become better places to live. Now is not the time for politicians to delay on this.’

Centre for Cities is calling on councils to introduce clean air zones that charge drivers, improve public transport systems, and improve active travel infrastructure.

SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Occupational Health Administrator

Cumbria County Council
£20,444 - £20,852
The Cumbria County Council Occupational Health team has an exciting opportunity for an enthusiastic and motivated Health Administrator. Cumbria
Recuriter: Cumbria County Council

Highways Team Leader - West x2

Cumbria County Council
£25,927 - £26,446
Are you a hard-working and experienced Highways operative, looking for the next step in your career? Cumbria
Recuriter: Cumbria County Council

Street Lighting Operative

Cumbria County Council
£22,571 – £23,484
We are looking for the right candidate to join our team as a Street Lighting Operative. Cumbria
Recuriter: Cumbria County Council

Programme and Project Officer - Domestic Abuse

Cumbria County Council
£28,226 - £29,174
Are you looking to gain experience in a challenging, and incredibly rewarding environment? Carlisle, Cumbria
Recuriter: Cumbria County Council

Fostering Social Worker - West

Cumbria County Council
£31,895 - £32,798
As a Fostering Social Worker, you will recruitment and train Foster Carers, supporting them in providing high quality family placements for children. Cumbria
Recuriter: Cumbria County Council

Partner Content

Circular highways is a necessity not an aspiration – and it’s within our grasp

Shell is helping power the journey towards a circular paving industry with Shell Bitumen LT R, a new product for roads that uses plastics destined for landfill as part of the additives to make the bitumen.

Support from Effective Energy Group for Local Authorities to Deliver £430m Sustainable Warmth Funded Energy Efficiency Projects

Effective Energy Group is now offering its support to the 40 Local Authorities who have received a share of the £430m to deliver their projects on the ground by surveying properties and installing measures.

Pay.UK – the next step in Bacs’ evolution

Dougie Belmore explains how one of the main interfaces between you and Bacs is about to change.