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Air quality in Harrogate has improved, says council

Air quality has improved across Harrogate, according to a new report produced by Harrogate Borough Council.

While monitoring results have been steadily improving for a number of years, this is the first time that all four air quality management areas have seen nitrogen dioxide (NO2) pollution reduce to below the objectives set by the government. 

The council has highlighted that they have taken various measures to improve air quality, including a trial of low-cost sensors in the air quality management zones, the introduction of a car club in Harrogate town centre, and they have also been working on the implementation of the Ultra-Low Emission Strategy. 

people sitting on green grass field near brown concrete building during daytime

The report, which has been sent to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) for approval, will be published on the council’s website in due course.

Cllr Phil Ireland, the cabinet member for carbon reduction and sustainability, said: ‘It’s positive that that annual reading for nitrogen dioxide is below the national air quality objectives.

‘We’re keen to remain at this level, or better still continue to improve, and have a number of actions as part of our air quality action plan.

‘These include working with HGV, bus and taxi providers to improve the quality of their fleet, our ultra-low emission vehicle strategy as well as air quality campaigns and education. We will also continue to trial our low-cost automatic sensors.

‘We are optimistic that the improvements in air quality will continue post Covid as many people have embraced a hybrid model of working at home and in the office.

‘We will also continue working with our transport planners, fleet manager and our colleagues in North Yorkshire County Council’s public health and highways teams to monitoring air quality and tailor our action plan accordingly.’

Photo by Illiya Vjestica

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