Derby City Council officials have today met with Environmental Minister Dr Therese Coffey MP to discuss new proposals to tackle air pollution in Derby.
Derby was one of five cities outside of London identified by DEFRA as having areas of air quality exceedance, and had previously been working under their direction to deliver a Clean Air Zone with a chargeable access restriction by 2020.
Following a revised air quality plan in July 2017, local authorities were asked to develop their local plans, to ensure they would achieve the required air quality targets, in the quickest possible time, and in a way that supports the local economy and positively encourages sustainable change.
Today, Derby City Council laid out their plans and asked Government to support a targeted local scrappage scheme for Derby. The scheme would be designed to offer incentives to rapidly remove the worst polluting vehicles from the city, and would avoid all of the negative social and economic impacts on businesses and residents that are inherent in road charging schemes.
In addition the Council proposed an ambitious package of measures aimed at changing travel behaviour and increasing active and sustainable travel
Councillor Asaf Afzal, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods and Public Protection said:
“Derby City Council do not believe that a charging scheme would actually achieve compliance, as many vehicle owners may have no alternative, or will simply elect to pay a charge rather than change their vehicle or travel behaviour. The Council has no intention of implementing measures that simply introduce additional costs for residents and businesses, whilst not achieving the necessary air quality improvements”.
“We firmly believe that a targeted scrappage scheme for Derby is right for the whole community. We have put a lot of time and effort into this, and we firmly believe that this is the right solution to reduce emissions, and in turn will deliver the most health, environmental, economic benefits in the quickest possible time.”