https://deframedia.blog.gov.uk/2019/06/20/clean-air-day/

Clean Air Day

Blue sky with fluffy white clouds

Today (20 June) marks Clean Air Day, a nationwide awareness day to increase people’s understanding of the effects of air pollution.

There is coverage this morning in the Times of a joint letter from the heads of four major charities (British Heart Foundation, British Lung Foundation, Unicef, Asthma UK) calling for the government to enshrine in law the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) guidelines on air quality.

The letter describes the government’s Clean Air Strategy as ‘a step in the right direction’ and asks parliamentarians across all parties to support the campaign to see the adoption of WHO guidelines on air quality in the Environment Bill. WHO has praised our Clean Air Strategy as 'an example for the rest of the world to follow'.

As outlined in the landmark Clean Air Strategy, we have committed to setting a new, ambitious, long-term air quality target. This will be informed by a report examining what action would be needed to meet the WHO guideline level across the UK. Before publication, we are carrying out further analysis to estimate the public health benefits we would expect to achieve in reducing people’s exposure to fine particulate matter.

As announced by the Prime Minister in July 2018, clean air will form a key part of the upcoming Environment Bill. In a recent interview with the Times, the Environment Secretary explained the Environment Bill will incorporate “everything you should have in a Clean Air Act” and will give legal force to crucial elements of the Clean Air Strategy.

We are exploring options for additional environmental targets as part of the new statutory cycle of monitoring, planning and reporting created by the draft Bill, and are looking to amend the Environment Act 1995 by strengthening the requirement for local collaboration to take action to avoid exceeding air quality limits, and shifting the focus towards prevention.

Follow Defra on Twitter, and sign up for email alerts here.

Share this page

2 comments

  1. Comment by Jacqueline Wall posted on

    But the government planning inspector has just relatively recently overturned refusal of planning by Cornwall Council for a new 33 housing development in the heart of rural Illogan in Cornwall on the last virgin piece of land in the centre of the village??? So with the roads in and out of the village chocca-bloc already and now building about to start on this unwanted new estate, there will be at least another 66 vehicles in our village..... That's x2 per new house as an average and we all know that many families now have teenage kids with vehicles too.... As well as all the internet etc. delivery vehicles, and service vehicles (gas, post, electric etc.). So the air quality in this village can only become worse can't it??? The left hand of government doesn't appear to appreciate or know what the right hand is doing. The inspector should NOT have overturned planning refusal in a local Cornish village where nobody wanted this development. WHERE IS DEMOCRACY and common sense for OUR air quality?!? All these initiatives for clean air and less carbon footprint and less this and that and they mean pretty much nothing at the local 'miniscule' everyday level do they?!?!?!?!

  2. Comment by Jacqueline Wall posted on

    But the government planning inspector has just recently overturned refusal of planning by Cornwall Council for a new 33 housing development in the heart of rural Illogan in Cornwall on the last Virginia piece of land in the centre of the village??? So with the roads in and out of the village chocca block already and now building about to start on this unwanted new estate, there will be at least another 66 vehicles in our village..... That's x2 per new house as an average and we all know that many families now have teenage kids with vehicles too.... As well as all the internet etc. delivery vehicles, and service vehicles (gas, post, electric etc.). So the air quality in this village can only become worse can't it??? The left hand of government doesn't appear to appreciate or know what the right hand is doing. The inspector should NOT have overturned planning refusal in a local Cornish village where nobody wanted this development. WHERE IS DEMOCRACY and common sense for our air quality ?!?!?,