The Welsh Government has launched a new Clean Air Plan today (August 6), outlining measures that will be taken to improve air quality across the country.
In Wales, poor air quality is responsible for between 1,000 – 1,400 premature deaths every year.
In order to reduce this figure, the Clean Air plan identifies a range of actions that will be taken to improve air quality.
These actions include investing in active travel infrastructure, improving rail services and achieving zero tailpipe emissions from taxi and bus fleets by 2028.
The government will also investigate measures to support a reduction in personal vehicle use, such as Clean Air Zones and Low Emission Zones.
They will also implement an electric vehicle charging strategy, supporting an increase in the proportion of ultra-low-emission vehicles.
It is hoped that alongside improving public health and quality of life that these measures will also protect the natural environment and support biodiversity.
Lesley Griffiths, the Minister for Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs, launched the new plan with a visit to Castle Street in Cardiff, where Cardiff Council is working to reduce high levels of nitrogen dioxide emissions.
Castle Street has been closed to vehicles with road space being reallocated to create a two-way cycle lane to improve the route through the city centre.
Lesley Griffiths said: ‘I am very pleased to announce the launch of our Clean Air Plan, which sets out how we will look to improve air quality across Wales and deal with those problems caused by air pollution, during the next 10 years.
‘The aims outlined in the Plan are there to safeguard the most vulnerable, but improving our air quality nationwide will be to the benefit of everyone in Wales, and it’s something we should all want and strive for. But in order to achieve that, we have to take action now.
‘While the work outlined in the plan will run across government, the measures involved cannot be achieved by government alone – well have a role to play in ensuring that we tackle the problems of air pollution and poor air quality.’
An earlier version of the Plan went out for public consultation in December; the revised Plan in its present form follows that consultation.
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