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Wandsworth Citizens’ Assembly on air quality holds its first meeting.

In 2019 Wandsworth council declared a Climate Emergency and set themselves the target of becoming the greenest borough in London. A new administration took over the running of the council in 2022 and the Citizens’ Assembly on Air Quality is part of their focus on increasing sustainability and cleaning up air pollution – an independent assembly made up of local people who will recommend actions to cut air pollution in the borough.

The assembly, which is a group of 50 randomly selected residents, will be holding four 10am – 4pm sessions across four consecutive Saturdays. Guest speakers will be invited and there will be an opportunity for community speakers to deliver a five minute presentation offering ‘their local insight and perspectives around air quality challenges or solutions.’

Rosamund Adoo Kissi-Debrah CBE speaks to the group

The process is being led by the social enterprise and community interest company Shared Future and an oversight panel was set up to ensure the process was unbiased and fair.

Ultimately, the participants will formulate some recommendations, all of which will be published in a report  prioritised by how strongly the group supported them. From the end of this month people will be able to participate online and attend an online webinar.

Speaking at the first assembly were:

  • Dr Iarla Kilbane Dawe (co-author and lead researcher for Defra/Local Government Association Guidance on Air Pollution and Air Quality lead for Waterman Group)
  • Shannon Katiyo (Director of Public Health, Wandsworth Council)
  • Maria Vaz & Jason Andrews (Wandsworth Council Air Quality Team)
  • Rosamund Adoo Kissi-Debrah CBE from the Ella Roberta Foundation.

Cabinet member for the environment Judi Gasser said: ‘It was a great pleasure to be at the meeting on Saturday. There was so much energy in the room and some really creative, exciting thinking.

‘Holding a Citizens’ Assembly and giving local people a real voice is crucial to ensuring we come together as a borough and come up with a robust plan to clean up our air so please take the opportunity to share you thoughts.’

 

 

 

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