Clean Air Plan

Why Liverpool?
Liverpool City Council (LCC) was directed by the Government in October 2018 to produce a Local Air Quality Plan
What happens if Liverpool does not comply?

If we do not comply with the clean air requirements there will be an unacceptable risk to people’s health and the city could also face a substantial fine.

What is a Clean Air Zone?
A Clean Air Zone (CAZ) is a defined area where targeted action is taken to improve air quality, as a consequence of pollution from motor vehicles. Although a CAZ aims to reduce all kind of air pollution, it is specifically focused on nitrogen dioxide (NO2) so that people breathe in less of all this pollutant. Charging CAZs are classed from A to D, with each class impacting different types of vehicles
What is Liverpool planning to do to improve Air Quality instead of a CAZ?

Over the last few years extensive technical modelling work has been done to identify areas in Liverpool with high levels of air pollution, to understand the cause and find solutions.  The current plan contains a range of highways measures and proposals that will help people use public transport and active travel

What are the next steps for Liverpool to deliver their Clean Air Plan?

Liverpool City Council need to submit the Outline Business Case to the Government for their approval in Summer 2022.  Following that, we will work up the Full Business Case.  The government then need to review the evidence and release funding to allow LCC to implement these measures.

An image of the Clean Air Zone symbol of a cloud in a circle

Clean Air Plan Impacts

What is nitrogen dioxide and what does it do?

Nitrogen dioxide (NO2) is a gas produced by burning fossil fuels with one of the biggest sources of NO2 being diesel used as a fuel in vehicle engines. Research has found that NO2 particularly affects children and people with existing respiratory problems, including asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). In long periods of exposure, it can cause breathing problems and lung damage.

The Government told us to buy diesel cars to reduce CO2, and now we are being told that diesel cars are worse for air quality?

In the past the Government encouraged the public to purchase diesel vehicles in an attempt to reduce carbon emissions, which was the focus on air quality at that time. However, progression in scientific research and technological advancements has shown that diesel powered vehicles contribute significant amounts of NO2 which can be harmful to public health.

What can I do now to protect myself and people I care about?

Re-mode: One simple and cost-effective change we can do to improve air quality is changing the way we travel. This could be in the form of car sharing, choosing to use public transport, or travel by non-motorised means such as cycling or walking. Even if we choose to travel differently just once a week, we could reduce the amount of air pollution our cars produce by up to 20%.

Re-time: Avoiding morning and evening rush hours can reduce congestion, thus minimising pollution from idling vehicles stuck in traffic jams.

Re-route: If possible, choose quieter routes that are less susceptible to congestion. When walking or cycling, try and keep away from busy roads by using parks, public footpaths or canals. The closer you are to busy traffic, the more you are at risk of air pollution.

Reduce: Avoiding unnecessary trips and driving economically by only accelerating gently. Sticking to speed limits and switching your engine off when stationary uses less fuel, saves money, reduces the risk of having an accident and ultimately reduces air pollution.
School Run: Where possible, cycle or walk with your children to school and support schools to develop active travel programs. If you have to drive, consider park and stride for the last part of your journey and avoid idling by turning the engine off when you are waiting near the school gates.

Where can I find out more?

Further updates on the Clean Air Plan and will be published on “Let’s Clear the Air Liverpool” website and our respective communication channels, including Facebook and Twitter.

Aerial view of Liverpool