Derby City Council has submitted their Outline Business Case (OBC) to government which sets out a case for traffic management measures that reduce roadside NO2 emissions rather than charging Clean Air Zones.
Derby was one of five local authorities ordered to take action to reduce Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) emissions from vehicles, in the ‘shortest possible time,’ and last year put three options out for public consultation.
Option 1 would introduce traffic management measures, focused on reducing roadside NO2 on Stafford Street on the outer ring of the city centre.
Option 2 proposed a charging CAZ limited to the city centre whilst Option 3 was a wider scale charging CAZ which would widen the area of the zone to the city’s outer ring road.
The council, who backed Option 1 in October, says it will deliver compliance with the legal NO2 limit at least 12 months after having been implemented.
The council claims this would be a speedier improvement than that likely from any potential charging Clean Air Zone – the option that the council is required to consider to ensure its plan meets its legal requirements.
Testing of the proposal, the council has said, demonstrates that no other areas will exceed NO2 limits as a result of the proposed scheme, although it has conceded that the proposal may attract criticism ‘that it does not do enough to improve the wider issue of air quality’.
Following a consultation of over 2500 people, 73.6% agreed with the main measures set out in Option 1, compared to just 27.5% for Option 2 and 17.1% for Option 3, with the OBC saying: ‘The introduction of any of the options considered could result in various challenges for people and businesses in Derby.’
The government has stated that if a local authority can identify measures other than charging zones that are at least as effective at reducing roadside NO2 in the shortest possible time, those
measures ‘should be preferred.’
Verna Bayliss, acting director of Planning and Transportation said: ‘We continue to give this work the highest priority, and are fully committed to meeting our legal duty to reduce roadside NO2 emissions at the site of exceedance.
‘We are confident that the traffic and network management scheme, is the most appropriate solution for Derby, that will deliver the reductions needed in the shortest possible time.’
Read the outline business case here.
In related news, last month Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees wrote to Defra minister Therese Coffey explaining why the authority had missed their deadline to submit an OBS to government regarding Bristol’s clean air plans.
Mr Rees expressed regret at missing the deadline, which was an extension of their original deadline of December 31, saying it was ‘unavoidable’ because the council’s own modelling indicated the measures would have ‘significant adverse impacts’ on some of the poorest people in the region.