Agenda item

Air Quality/Pollution & ULEZ

To receive an update on the impact of the expansion of the Ultra-Low Emission Zone, and its impact on air quality/pollution.


Ned Johnson introduced and highlighted the key aspects of the report, including but not limited to: the impact of the ultra-low emission zone, compliance standards, and monitoring data/ statistics.


In response to Members’ questions relating to data, officers replied that 12 months’ worth of data, up to September next year, would be needed for robustness. This was due to variances in the data as a result of exogenous factors such as weather. There were four real time, continuous, automatic monitoring sites in the borough measuring nitrogen dioxide, and one particulate monitor, which were strategically placed and had been there long before the ULEZ expansion. Members expressed that an update on this item should be considered in next year’s work programme.


In response to Members queries relating to the impact of the expansion on the council, officers advised that they were ensuring that their vehicles/ fleet were compliant and installing electric vehicle charging points, but the scheme was led by the Mayor of London and implemented through TFL.


In response to Members’ questions and comments regarding how limits were set, officers responded that ULEZ was based on vehicle emission standards set by Europe which manufacturers worked towards, with higher Euro standard numbers reflecting lower emissions.


In response to Members’ enquiries relating to other air quality impactors, officers replied that as vehicle technology had improved, the proportion of emissions from travel had reduced; with building emissions, such as gas boilers, becoming larger influencers. The council’s air quality action plan set out what it was doing to improve air quality.


In response to Members’ questions regarding EV charging points and LTNs, officers advised that proportionately the increase in concentration of cars on main roads as a result of LTNs was relatively low. In the case of Bowes Primary, the introduction of a green wall between the A406 and the school had reduced nitrogen dioxide by 22%, and the extension of the green wall and addition of a school street, for better protection were being looked at. Cllr Jewell said they were going through a process to tender 1,000 lamppost chargers and 17 rapid electric vehicle chargers for the borough this year, but legislative hurdles had held up this procurement.


In response to Members queries regarding the reduction in capital spending and the electric fleet, Cllr Jewell and officers responded that electric vehicles were being procured as part of the capital programme, but there was a challenge in that manufacturers were not producing electric versions of all types of the vehicles the council used. A waste truck recently lost to a fire was as a result of incorrectly discarded waste; but the vehicles had extinguisher systems. 


A member of the public asked about adding more emission monitors, to which officers said there was a difference between passive and automatic monitors, and Enfield had more automatic sites than most other similar boroughs. As part of their strategic monitoring, they would be putting in air quality sensors around school streets, which would provide more relative data; and there were 22 diffusion/ sampling tubes in the borough already.


The Panel AGREED to note the report detailing the impact of the Ultra-Low Emission Zone expansion.

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