Local authorities across England have been awarded grants totalling more than £2.2 million in government funding to deliver innovative projects to improve air quality.
The money, from the government’s Air Quality Grant programme, supports schemes which help councils develop and implement measures to benefit schools, businesses and residents, reducing the impact on people’s health and creating cleaner and healthier environments.
Proposals receiving funding include projects and campaigns to:
o Reduce harmful emissions outside schools.
o Encourage the take up of electric taxis.
o Encourage more active transport through education, awareness, and the creation and improvement of cycling and pedestrian routes, and
o Collect further data on the exposure to air pollution by vulnerable groups in order to better design future policies.
The £2,273,367 awarded in this round of funding means that more than £64 million has been awarded through the Air Quality Grant since it was launched in 1997.
The scheme is expected to run again in 2020/21.
List of local authority schemes receiving funding in this round:
o Blaby District Council – Active travel programme aimed at schools and large workplaces (£123,378).
o Canterbury City Council – Anti-idling campaign along school route; installation of fast electric charging points (£156,377).
o City of York Council – Encourage take up of electric taxis through behaviour and awareness campaign
o Colchester Borough Council – Study on effectiveness of anti-idling campaign and Traffic Light Countdown feasibility study (£59,785).
o East Herts Council – Enhancement of pedestrian subway that bypasses a dual carriage way to encourage active travel. Working in partnership with Hertfordshire County Council (£54,000).
o East Sussex County Council – Schools education, awareness and active travel programme and temporary street closures during the school run. Working in partnership with West Sussex, Brighton & Hove, Crawley Borough, Lewes, and Adur & Worthing Councils (£81,900).
o Islington London Borough Council – Particulate Matter data gathering and mapping study using street mapping and portable air quality monitors (£10,995).
Leicester City Council = Particulate Matter data gathering and mapping study using 3D Global GEOS-Chem models (£124,081).
o Oxford City Council – Trial of a low-cost mobile Automated Number Plate Recognition enforcement system (£150,000).
o Sheffield City – Schools education, awareness and active travel programme and temporary street closures during the school run. Working in partnership with Barnsley, and Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Councils (£144,430).
o South Buckinghamshire District Council – Feasibility study (£52,500).
o Southampton City Council – Targeted behaviour and awareness campaign focussed on domestic burning and summer bonfires. Working in partnership with Winchester, Eastleigh, and New Forest Councils (£60,100).
o Transport for West Midlands – Retrofit of at least 20 buses to Euro VI. Working in partnership with Birmingham, Wolverhampton, Coventry, Dudley, Sandwell, Solihull, Walsall, Cannock Chase, North Warwickshire, Nuneaton and Bedworth, Redditch, Rugby, Shropshire, Stratford on Avon, Tamworth, Telford and Wrekin, Warwickshire Councils (£340,000).
o Warrington Borough Council – Encourage take up of electric taxis through behaviour and awareness campaign. Develop low emission taxi strategy. Install rapid charge points (£87,350).
o Westminster Cross River Partnership – Expansion on Clean Air Village 1&2 Projects – engagement and behavioural change project to reduce emissions from the delivery of good and services for businesses, hospitals and communities. Partners include 12 London Boroughs: Westminster, Camden, Hammersmith & Fulham, Haringey, Islington, Lambeth, Lewisham, Merton, Richmond upon Thames, Wandsworth, City of London Corporation and the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea; and 4 Business Improvement Districts: Angel, London, The Fitzrovia Partnership, North Bank and South Bank
o Wokingham Borough Council – Active travel behaviour and awareness campaign for children, parents and teachers (£150,101).
Further information is available on the GOV.UK website.
Image: air pollution in London