Council asking for views from residents after publishing report identifying air quality issues in region
Suffolk Coastal district council is asking for views from residents about any concerns they may have over the district’s air quality.
The Council’s produces an ‘Updating and Screening Assessment Report’ every three years, containing updates on Air Quality Management Areas (AQMAs) in Felixstowe and Woodbridge.
The 2012 report has been approved by the government, but the council is legally required to consult with the public to identify any issues or concerns they may have relating to air quality.
As well as the information on the AQMAs, the report gives information about monitoring of nitrogen dioxide that was undertaken at a number of sites along the A12 in 2011 – in Glemham, Stratford St Andrew and Farnham.
At one site, in Stratford St. Andrew, elevated levels were recorded. According to the council, more robust monitoring has been carried out in 2012 in order to determine if the nitrogen dioxide exceeds acceptable levels at this location.
Meanwhile, the council has also begun feasibility studies looking at what emission reductions could be expected from changes to the roads in the Melton Hill area and removal of street car parking on Melton Hill. Monitoring is continuing at all of these locations.
Councillor Andrew Nunn, Suffolk Coastal’s cabinet member for the green environment said: “The Report confirms that across the district our air quality remains generally good, with just a couple of very specific areas of concern.
“These are the declared Air Quality Management Areas in Felixstowe and Woodbridge and a new area that needs investigation on the A12 at Stratford St Andrew. The problem in all three areas relates to the pollutant nitrogen dioxide, which can adversely affect people’s health, particularly the respiratory system in asthmatics and non-asthmatics.
“Short term exposure to high levels of nitrogen dioxide can increase the likelihood of reaction to allergens such as pollen and has been known to increase asthma in some people. There is also an increased likelihood of respiratory infections in children.â€?
Comments on the 2012 Updating and Screening Assessment Report, including the Woodbridge AQMA report, can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org by August 12.