On 12 March 2012, Harrogate Borough Council will start an eight week consultation to develop an action plan to tackle problems being caused by pollution affecting High and Low Skellgate, Ripon and Bond End, Knaresborough.
Local residents, businesses and visitors are being invited to take part in this wide-reaching consultation.
The council has a statutory duty to manage local air quality under the 1995 Environment Act. It regularly carries out reviews and assessments across the district against objectives set by the government through the Department of Environment Food and Rural Affairs.
Reviews have led to the declaration of Air Quality Management areas in these locations as they are showing levels of unacceptable pollution mostly caused by traffic. The council must now prepare an action plan to identify ways in which this pollution can be improved.
Councillor Nick Brown, Cabinet Member for Public Protection and Rural Affairs, says the borough council is working closely with North Yorkshire County Council as the local highway authority.
Councillor Nick Brown added:
We want people’s views on what is being proposed including restrictions on vehicles travelling through the areas, planning controls and better sign posting.
We will also be looking at how we can improve drivers’ knowledge about what they can do to help the situation. Our own fleet drivers have just undergone a project with the Energy Savings Trust. Simple actions can help not only reduce pollution but also reduce fuel costs. And of course we will continue to promote other forms of transport such as the healthy option of walking or cycling.
Exhibitions will open on 12 March 2012 in Knaresborough and Ripon libraries and the council’s professional and technical officers will be available to answer questions at:
- Knaresborough Library on Friday 23 March 3pm – 7pm and Saturday 21 April 11am – 3pm
- Ripon library on Monday 19 March 2.30pm – 6.30pm and Saturday 31 March 11am – 3pm.
Information and questionnaires will also be available at Knaresborough House and Ripon Town Hall.
A special area has also been set up on Harrogate Borough Council’s web site giving full details and allowing people to either complete the questionnaire (from 12 March 2012) on line or to download a form to post back to the council.
The address is www.harrogate.gov.uk/aqconsult