West Midlands Mayor ‘throws down gauntlet’ for air quality

The Mayor of the West Midlands Andy Street is challenging tech innovators, artists, politicians, academics and business leaders to come up with innovative solutions to cut air pollution.

The Mayor’s ‘Clean Growth Challenge’ was launched yesterday after he said the West Midlands has a ‘moral responsibility’ to lead on clean growth.

One of his four challenges is centred around creating cleaner transport systems, with the other three related to low-carbon buildings, clean energy and behavioural change.

‘Clean growth is a challenge facing every major city across the globe,’ said Mayor Andy Street.

‘Here in the West Midlands, we’re making huge strides in green technology, and we have the expertise, enthusiasm and knowledge to lead the way in clean growth for the rest of the world.

‘That’s why I’m throwing down the gauntlet to businesses, academics and political organisations across the region to get together to meet my Clean Growth Challenges,’ he added.

‘We can improve, enhance and innovate on the great work already underway in the West Midlands and show we have the big ideas to grow a strong economy without creating a cost for our environment.’

In related news, Birmingham was dealt a blow earlier this week after they were forced to delay their upcoming Clean Air Zone due to the government not delivering digital vehicle checking tools in time that are needed to make the zones operational.

Last month, Coventry City Council were directed by government to implement a Class D charging Clean Air Zone (CAZ) to tackle the city’s air pollution problems.

Ministers have rejected alternative measures put forward by the council, which included restricting traffic on certain roads, deeming them to be insufficient to tackle nitrous dioxide (NO2) levels which are set to exceed the EU’s legal limits.