The purpose of the report by the Director of Transport, Environment & Business Support is to provide information on the results of the public consultation on the draft Air Quality Strategy 2017-2027, and to note the amendments made to the strategy as a result of the public consultation. The report also seeks adoption of the draft Air Quality Strategy (appendix A).
RECOMMENDED that the Cabinet Member for Traffic and Transportation adopts the Air Quality Strategy 2017-2027.
The Cabinet Member for Traffic and Transportation adopted the Air Quality Strategy 2017-2027.
Pam Turton, Assistant Director of Transport, Environment & Business Support, introduced the report which set out the responses to the consultation. She stressed that the strategy was a vision for the city and the detailed work plan was being developed.
A deputation was made by Ms T McCulloch, as a member of the local Green Party, who asked that the Air Quality Strategy was not accepted in its current format, and she outlined her concerns. These included it was not apparent where changes had already been made, asking how and when the green infrastructure through planting of trees would be implemented, and whether this report was premature with the government plans to be announced at the end of the month, and challenging why the action plan would follow separately. She felt there should be more targets and measurable actions specified, and asked that the necessary resources be made available to implement plan.
Councillor Bosher stressed that he was approving the strategy and he was awaiting the action plan which should be brought back in a timely way; he would expect a report back before Christmas.
Alan Cufley, Director of Transport, Environment & Business Support, also clarified that the Action Plan would have more detail and that the Arboricultural Officer would be consulted regarding further planting around the city. Work would continue with DEFRA, the Department of Transpor, local interest groups, other organisations and individuals as the plan is updated.
There had also been a written deputation by Mr Dobson on behalf of Friends of Old Portsmouth (FOOPA) which included concerns on pollution caused by car idling which was referred to by Councillor Stagg who suggested there be signage to encourage switching off engines at traffic lights. She was also concerned at the poor air quality at some major junctions in the city such as Burrfields Road. Alan Cufley also responded to some of the points raised by FOOPA, such as the signage at railway junctions, and confirmed this would be reviewed as part of the Action Plan refresh. Councillor Stagg also suggested further involvement of the Woodland Trust and local schools for tree planting projects.
Councillor Bosher stressed that there would be focus not only on traffic but other factors such as heating systems, and the Port. The Action Plan would encompass a whole range of measures and there would be the allocation of resources. He was pleased that the electric vehicle charging points were being expanded (as detailed in a report on the same agenda). The main challenge was to change the mind-set of multiple cars for families.
DECISION: The Cabinet Member for Traffic and Transportation adopted the Air Quality Strategy 2017-2027.