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Agenda Item No

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Cabinet Meeting: 18 November, 2013

 

Report of the Leader

 

2013 Air Quality Progress Report

 

Purpose of the Report

1.         To seek approval of the 2013 Air Quality Progress Report.

2.         To provide members with an overview of the latest review of air quality within the Vale of Glamorgan.

Recommendations

1.         That Cabinet agrees the 2013 Air Quality Progress Report.

Reasons for the Recommendations

1.         To approve the 2013 Air Quality Progress Report.

Background

3.         Air pollution remains a serious public health issue and contributes to ill health and mortality across the UK.  For persons in a good state of health, moderate air pollution levels are unlikely to have any serious short term effects.  However, long term exposure or exposure to elevated levels of some pollutants can lead to more serious symptoms and health conditions mainly affecting the respiratory system.  People with underlying lung or heart conditions are also more susceptible to the effects of air pollution.

4.         Under the Environment Act 1995 the Council has a statutory obligation to review and assess air quality within it's area against objectives for a number of key pollutants within the Air Quality Standards (Wales) Regulation 2010.  The objectives are set for the protection of human health.

5.         On an annually basis, the Council must consider air quality within it's boundary and publish it's findings.  The report is collated from air quality monitoring data collected across the Vale of Glamorgan by the Council's Pollution Control team and submitted to the Welsh Government for consideration before being presented to Cabinet for approval.

6.         An Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) was agreed by Cabinet for part of Windsor Road on the 1st July 2013 to address poor air quality in along a section of the road.

Relevant Issues and Options

7.         A copy of the 2013 Air Quality Report Overall is attached in Appendix 1.  In summary, the air quality across the Vale of Glamorgan complies with regulations to protect human health.

8.         The data for 2012 continues to highlight some locations where road traffic emissions of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) are at, close to or above the relevant annual average concentration of 40 ug/m3.  These locations are

·           Windsor Road Penarth

·           Cogan Roundabout

·           Railway Terrace, Cardiff Road, Dinas Powys

·           Tynewydd Rd, Barry

·           Culverhouse Cross

9.         At these locations the Council will continue to monitor the levels of nitrogen dioxide.

10.      Monitoring data obtained in 2012 supports the Cabinet decision to declare an Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) for a portion of Windsor Rd Penarth due to emissions of nitrogen dioxide from road traffic.

11.      Indicative monitoring of particulate matter (PM10) at the ‘Streetbox’ station at Windsor Road, Penarth complied with the regulations in 2012, an improvement on the situation in 2011, where it did not.  However, the report still recommends to undertake PM10 equivalence monitoring within the Air Quality Management Area.

12.      Both Ozone and Sulphur dioxide (SO2) concentrations did not exceed their relevant objectives.

13.      The Air Quality Review recommends that the Council continues to monitor air quality at the majority of current locations but to also review the location of the nitrogen dioxide diffusion tube and to re-locate tubes to property facades, where practicable, and to areas where the relevant exposure of nitrogen dioxide concentrations are consistently close to the annual average objective. Officers have begun to Identify tubes with consistently low, compliant concentrations and relocate these tubes to locations of poor air quality due to traffic emissions.

14.      The Review also recommends considering a Detailed Assessment of air quality for an area along Railway Terrace and Cardiff Road, Dinas Powys.  Again, officers have begun to progress this action.

15.      As this report considered the air quality during 2012, it recommended that the Council propose and consult on the declaration of Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) for the section of Windsor Road  indentified by previous Detailed Assessment.  This action has been completed and a report on this proposed area was present and agreed by Cabinet in July 2013.  

16.      The report also recommended relocating Penarth’s automatic monitoring station from it's existing location to within the proposed AQMA where domestic properties are close to the road and may limit dispersion of  pollutants.  Again, this relocation of the equipment is underway.

17.      Linked to this relocation of equipment, the reports recommendation to replace the indicative PM10 monitor (Streetbox) with equivalence, gravimetric PM10 monitor within proposed AQMA is also in progress.

18.      In line with Welsh Government guidance, the 2012 Air Quality Report has been submitted to Welsh Government for consideration and has been noted. 

19.      The final conclusion of the Report is to proceed to the 2014 Air Quality Progress Report.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

20.      The Pollution Control team has an existing budget to complete a programme of air quality monitoring across the Vale. 

21.      Additional NO2 diffusion tube and particulate monitoring will be required and can be met from existing budgets.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

22.      There is a positive impact on climate change from this report.  Through monitoring air quality it ensures the impact of pollution of our air is monitored, and where air quality objective are breached, action is take to take and address this negative impact.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

23.      The Council has a statutory duty to produce and publish reports to fulfil the requirements of the Local Air Quality Management process as set out in Part IV of the Environment Act 1995, and the Air Quality Strategy for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland 2007.

24.      Environment Act 1995 Section 82 places a duty on all the Council to periodically review air quality within our boundary.  This includes assessment of compliance of present and likely future air quality to comply with the objectives of the Air Quality (Wales) Regulations 2010.

25.      Where air quality is unlikely to meet the objectives set out in section 83 of the Environment Act 1995, the Council is required to declare an Air Quality Management Area.

26.      Where an Air Quality Management Area is declared, section 84 of the Environment Act 1995 places a duty on the Council to develop an Action Plan to address the situation.

Crime and Disorder Implications

27.      None

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

28.      There are no equal opportunities implications from this report.

Corporate/Service Objectives

29.      Development Services Plan 2013/14

Service Outcome 1 - Residents of the Vale feel safe in their communities, are healthy and have a good quality of life.

Objective 1 - To improve health and wellbeing of residents and visitors by delivering a range of targeted and accessible services.

 

Policy Framework and Budget

30.      This report is a matter for Executive decision

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

31.      This report is not specific to a ward.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

32.      Housing and Public Protection.

Background Papers

None.

 

Contact Officer

Kristian James - Pollution Control Team Leader 01446 709761

 

Officers Consulted

Finance - Mike Bumford, Senior Accountancy Assistant

Legal Services - Jocelyn Ham, Senior Lawyer

 

Responsible Officer:

Rob Thomas - Director for Development Services

 

 

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