The decline of industry, the introduction of lead-free petrol and smokeless fuel have all contributed to improved air quality over the years. However, some pollutants, particularly those associated with vehicle emissions, are still of concern.
We have a duty to review local air quality, with the aim of identifying areas where the Government's air quality standards for key pollutants are likely to be exceeded. When this is the case, such places are declared an "Air Quality Management Area". The Council then prepare action plans to show what can be done to improve air quality in these areas.
South Ribble currently has four relatively small "Air Quality Management Areas", where levels of road traffic pollution are being monitored at the following locations. You can click on the locations to see a map:
Did you know poor air quality results in the deaths of over 40,000 people a year in the UK?
In South Ribble particulate matter (PM2.5) causes 4.5% of all adult deaths (reference) which is the third highest in Lancashire.
In addition to the premature deaths poor air quality increases the risk of cardio vascular disease (strokes and heart attacks), respiratory disease (asthma), and development of young children. It has also been linked to the development of dementia.
It particularly affects the young, old and those will existing health problems.
The declared AQMA's within South Ribble have all been declared for the exceedance of the national objective levels of Nitrogen Dioxide (40µg/m3) the principle source being vehicle emissions. Another pollutant of concern is particulate matter (PM10 & PM2.5).
Following the declaration of the four Air Quality Management Areas (AQMA's) within the borough, South Ribble Borough Council in consultation with its partners, has published the attached Air Quality Action Plan (AQAP).
The AQAP sets out the measures the Council and its partners aim to achieve to help reduce the harmful levels of air quality pollutants across the borough.
Following the declaration of another AQMA in Leyland the Council are reviewing the action plan. As part of this process a public consultation exercise is being held to obtain the views of the public and partner organisation on
measures previously identified in the current plan and
Any ideas for new measures which can be taken forward to improve air quality within the borough.
Each year the Council completes a report on the air quality across the borough and the actions being taken to improve it.
If you would like to know more about the air quality within South Ribble and how you can help to reduce the pollution then please contact the Environmental Health Section on 01772 421491.