Bristol City Council outline CAZ options amid air pollution concerns

Bristol City Council outline CAZ options amid air pollution concerns

Bristol City Council has discussed implementing a Clean Air Zone (CAZ) in the city to ensure it is meeting legal limits for levels of nitrogen dioxide.

Throughout the country there has been illegal levels of nitrogen dioxide reported which needs to be addressed, with Bristol becoming the next city to propose implementing  CAZ.

The local authority is developing a Clean Air Action Plan which would see air pollution tackled using various different methods, such as more investment into public transport services and cycling, traffic management and greater use of existing regulatory powers such as taxi licensing as well as implementing a CAZ in the city.

Bristol City Council mentioned that they had previously discussed approaches to tackle air pollution but have taken into account the legal decision by Government in July 2017 which formally directed 27 cities, including Bristol, to take action on air pollution which specified that:

    • “By 31st March 2018 Bristol City Council must undertake a feasibility study and identify options which would deliver compliance with legal limits for nitrogen dioxide in the shortest possible time.”
    • “By 31 December 2018 Bristol City Council must identify a preferred option, including value for money considerations and the implementation of arrangements.”

The council is working with a market research company to inform traffic models designed to see how effective a Clean Air Zone could be in changing drivers’ choices about the trips they make.

The feasibility study is funded by the national government. A shortlist of options have been developed and assessed against a range of factors, including those most likely to contribute towards achieving compliance with the legal limit for nitrogen dioxide in the shortest possible time.

The options proposed are:

1. A Non-Charging Clean Air Zone with 17 complementary interventions
2. A Charging Clean Air Zone (Medium size, Class C – all vehicles except cars) with 12 complementary interventions
3. A Charging Clean Air Zone (Medium size, Class D – all vehicles) with 12 complementary interventions
4. A Charging Clean Air Zone (Small size, Class C – all vehicles except cars) with 12 complementary interventions
5. A Charging Clean Air Zone (Small size, Class D – all vehicles) with 12 complementary interventions.

Further assessments of the five options will now be undertaken and are estimated to achieve compliance in 2023. The next stage of analysis will consider this in much more detail.

Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol, said: “There is no single solution to our air pollution problem in Bristol so we must look at this issue from many different angles. My Mayoral Air Quality Working Group is currently developing integrated plans across transport and public health and we’re looking at the most effective ways to tackle harmful pollution levels.

“We haven’t waited for the government directive to start thinking about ways to make the city a healthier place to live and work. Now we need to agree the right approach for Bristol, which fits with national policy and is fair for everyone travelling around our city and particularly does not have a detrimental impact on low income households”.

Cllr Kye Dudd, Cabinet Member for Energy, Waste and Regulatory Services, with responsibility for air quality, said: “Studies show that around 300 lives are lost each year due to poor air quality in the city, which comes mainly from road traffic, and in particular from diesel engines in cars, freight and buses. We’ve investigated the most effective ways of tackling harmful air pollution and are now in a position to share the best options from our technical studies.”

The feasibility study is funded by the national government. A shortlist of options have been developed and assessed against a range of factors, including those most likely to contribute towards achieving compliance with the legal limit for nitrogen dioxide in the shortest possible time.