Ann McGauran 22 January 2020

NLGN study highlights concerns over air quality

NLGN study highlights concerns over air quality image

Unitaries are much less likely than Metropolitan councils and London boroughs to consider taking action on air quality as ‘extremely or very important’, the latest quarterly NLGN leadership index survey has found.

All respondents from Metropolitan councils and London boroughs said taking action on air quality is ‘extremely or very important’, compared to only 59% of  those from unitaries.

More than half (51.2%) of respondents disagreed or strongly disagreed that they have enough powers and resources to improve air quality in their area.

Respondents from independent-led councils are the most optimistic about having adequate resources and powers to improve air quality while almost three quarters of respondents from Labour-led councils disagreed.

Four out of 10 respondents from the North East said they have enough powers and resources to improve local air quality, compared to 8% and 11% respectively in the South East and Yorkshire and the Humber.

The most significant barriers to improving air quality were identified as a lack of resources (25%), competing priorities (24%); and limited decision-making powers (20%). Other key barriers mentioned included the ‘lack of Government direction as to who is leading and has responsibility’.

Concerns were also raised about poor coordination across tiers and agencies. One view was that the ‘system is set up to fail’, with ‘significant issues’ in two-tier areas as air quality is monitored by districts while counties have powers over transport issues.

Senior policy researcher at NLGN Pawda Tjoa said: ‘ Government has signalled its awareness of this issue through the air quality targets it has placed locally. Now it urgently needs to trust and support councils to do their bit to tackle local pollution and actually meet these targets.

‘Not only should it commit resources, but it should give local places the freedom to try new, innovative ways to reduce congestion and clean up the air their residents breathe.’

SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Social Worker - Children with Disabilities - West

Essex County Council
£30001.0 - £41000.0 per month
In Essex County Council we are "Serious about Social Work". Having recently won the Best Social Work Employer of the Year Award 2018 and been awarded England, Essex, Harlow
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Education Legal Services Officer

Essex County Council
Negotiable
Please note that there are 2 positions available, 1 permanent position and 1 fixed term position for 12 months. Essex County Council has embarked upon England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Project Support Officer

The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council
£25,833 - £29,796 per annum
This role supports the project delivery and business operations of the Asset Strategy and Short Breaks Teams, ensuring that regular business runs... Kensington and Chelsea, London (Greater)
Recuriter: The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council

Data Administrator

The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council
£25,833 - £29,796 per annum
You must have excellent ICT skills to include Excel and Word, plus experience of using email. Kensington and Chelsea, London (Greater)
Recuriter: The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council

Team Manager - Corporate Support

Epping Forest District Council
£33,500 - £36,401 (doe) plus excellent benefits
To be successful you will have previous experience in a Team Management role in service delivery with a focus on continuous improvement. Essex
Recuriter: Epping Forest District Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how public sector organisations can unlock the hidden value in their land, and why a new approach to construction could help boost the outcomes of the Government’s One Public Estate programme.

The December issue also considers why learnings from ancient cities could provide the key to promoting wellbeing in the modern built environment. It also contains a case study on how the London Borough of Westminster has provided high quality care for the elderly alongside a block of luxury apartments.

Register for your free digital issue