Croydon Council is to take an in-depth look at air quality and draft a new five-year action plan aimed at delivering cleaner air in the borough.
Building on the existing five-year plan, the Air Quality Action Plan will focus on the steps the council can take to reduce emissions and minimise the exposure of air pollutants to those who live and work in Croydon.
It is proposed the new plan will include actions around transport and public health. Road transport is the largest source of nitrogen dioxide in Croydon’s air accounting for just over 50%, while 29% is from domestic and commercial heating.
At high concentrations nitrogen dioxide causes inflammation of the airways and long-term exposure can affect lung function. It can also contribute to the shortening of life expectancy and usually impacts on the most vulnerable.
Croydon town centre will see unprecedented development over the next few years and the most significant risk to air quality is emissions produced by both construction sites and construction vehicles. As a result the council has produced a zonal Construction Logistics Plan which sets out measures to manage, smooth, and communicate what is being done to ensure that existing visitors, residents and businesses in the town centre can continue as normal.
Over the last five years, innovative proposals put in place to improve air quality in Croydon have included reducing air pollution from idling cars by instructing drivers to switch their engines off, partnering with other regional London boroughs to reduce the impact of air pollution from goods vehicles and launching the Cleaner Air 4 Schools campaign, aimed at changing parents and children’s behaviours to reduce pollution.
Future plans could include reviewing the borough’s smoke control zones, which limit the emissions of smoke and fumes from residential and industrial properties and launching a volunteer programme aimed at supporting local people to raise awareness and understanding of the problems around air quality in Croydon.
Local people will be invited to have their say on the committee’s recommended actions following an Air Quality Summit to be held in March, ahead of the draft plan being presented to cabinet for approval.
Councillor Stuart King, cabinet member for transport and environment
“Like other inner London boroughs, there are areas in Croydon where air pollution is too high and we are working hard to bring these levels down. The new plan will build on the actions we have already put in place to reduce the impact of poor air quality on the health of people that live, work and visit Croydon.
“We all have a part to play in reducing pollution and I encourage everyone to get involved and share their ideas with us when the time comes to help shape the action plan.”
The Air Quality Action Plan 2017-2022 will be discussed at the street, environment and homes scrutiny sub-committee meeting this evening. Watch the meeting online here.