Colchester launches two-year air pollution project

Colchester Borough Council has launched a two-year project to raise awareness of air pollution in Colchester.

The authority has created a short video highlighting the dangers of air pollution and has asked residents, businesses, schools and community groups to complete a survey to give the Colchester Borough Council’s Air Quality Project team a better understanding of what people currently know about air quality and the impact it has on their health.

The survey also looks at how people could be encouraged to make changes in their habits – like switching car engines off whilst stationary.

Colchester currently has four Air Quality Management Areas (AQMAs).

Over the coming months, the council’s Air Quality Project team will be visiting local groups and meetings to talk to residents face to face.

Last week, Colchester was named one of the top 10 ‘most climate-friendly’ councils by Friends of the Earth.

The charity judged councils in different categories including renewable energy, public transport, lift-sharing, energy efficiency at home, waste recycling, and tree cover to find an overall winner, which was Wiltshire.

Spelthorne, Ribble Valley and Pendle were joint bottom.

Cllr Martin Goss, Colchester Borough Council portfolio holder for waste, environment and transportation, said: ‘It was great to see that Colchester was ranked as one of the most climate-friendly areas in England and Wales, in the recent Friends of the Earth league table.

‘However, the environment remains our number-one priority and it’s important that we continue our work to improve our air quality in Colchester, especially to lower emissions in our most polluted streets.

‘This survey is just the start and we’ve already had lots of interest from residents who have a real appetite for change. The project team will also be visiting lots of local groups over the coming months, talking to people face to face. I urge everyone to fill in the survey and help us create a Better Colchester.’

The survey can be completed by visiting colchester.gov.uk/cleanair.