Decision details

CLEAN AIR ZONE

Decision Maker: Council

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No

Decision:

Resolved –

 

Council notes that:

·         The Government published its national Clean Air Strategy in 2019. This commits the UK to setting some air pollution goals more ambitious than the EU and reducing particulate matter emissions by 46% by 2030.

 

·         The piece of legislation entitled Environment Act 1995 (City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council) Air Quality Direction 2020 (publishing.service.gov.uk) legally directs Bradford Council to provide a charging Clean Air Zone to improve air quality.

 

·         We all want cleaner air across the district.

 

·         The Clean Air Zone Framework issued by the Department for Transport clearly states “Clean Air Zone proposals are not required to include a charging zone”, unless otherwise directed by Government, as Bradford has been. 

 

·         The Clean Air Zone Framework is voluntary code for those local authorities who are not operating under a Government directive.  Given our poor air quality and its impact on our children’s health, DEFRA has issued a Government directive compelling Bradford to introduce a charging Clean Air Zone.

 

·         Research has shown that air pollution can affect children before they’re even born. Currently more than one in five children in Bradford has a wheezing disorder.

 

·         The Government directive from the Minister states that having considered all the data of the district the following action now needs to be taken.  The following is the exact wording on the legal order:

            “Class C Charging Clean Air Zone

            To be implemented as soon as possible and at least in time to bring   forward compliance to 2022”

 

·         Government has directed that Bradford will have a Class C CAZ which means that residents’ privately owned vehicles will not be subject to any charge. 

 

·         Bradford has secured the biggest funding deal of any local authority in the country from Government and we are therefore providing the most generous support packages for businesses upgrading to cleaner, CAZ-compliant vehicles. The Government’s CAZ Framework is clear that daily charges should be set at a level to encourage vehicle owners to upgrade their vehicles to CAZ standard.

 

  • The Council has consulted widely with residents, businesses and other organisations on the CAZ through a variety of channels, including a series of in person events, online events, question and answer sessions, written submissions, a dedicated webpage and a wider publicity campaign.

 

  • During Covid working patterns have changed nationally with much more home working and this is a pattern that is likely to continue in the future, however in November 2020 Bradford traffic levels went back to 100% of what they were pre-COVID.

 

Council resolves:

·         To comply with the law as laid out in the legal order directed by Government which is entitled, “Environment Act 1995 (City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council) Air Quality Direction 2020 (publishing.service.gov.uk) signed by Environment Minister Rebecca Pow and continue to work with businesses who wish to upgrade their vehicles and take advantage of the incentives offered.

 

·         To publish the current air quality monitoring data and how it compares with the figures taken in 2018 and publish the target figures.

 

·         To continue to listen to the concerns of businesses, hauliers, taxi drivers and residents.

 

·         To continue to work with Leeds, Bath, Portsmouth, Nottingham, Sheffield, Southampton, Birmingham and others to learn lessons and seek, as well as provide, advice.

 

·         To back the Labour Group’s request of Government to permit Bradford to reduce the charge for non-compliant taxis to £7 instead of the planned £12.50 (the government’s own charge per vehicle is included in this).

 

·         To invite the author of the legal order, Environment Minister Rebecca Pow, to visit Bradford district once the restrictions ease so that she can talk to councillors of all parties about the directive for the Clean Air Zone.

 

ACTION: Strategic Director Place / Chief Executive (Invitation to the Environment Minister)

Publication date: 16/07/2021

Date of decision: 13/07/2021

Decided at meeting: 13/07/2021 - Council