Bradford’s Clean Air Zone is due to come into force this spring. This is to be welcomed as progress towards reducing the harms caused by air pollution. Air pollution is now widely recognised as a significant contributory factor to health problems such asthma, heart disease, cancer and dementia. Poor air quality also tends to affect the most vulnerable in our society – the youngest, the oldest, those with pre-existing health needs and tends to occur in the less affluent areas of cities. The Clean Air Zone should reduce the levels of pollution in Bradford’s air and will have a positive impact on the health of our cities’ most vulnerable citizens.
There has been some concern recently about Bradford Council “getting cold feet”: wavering as to whether there should be a CAZ or a very-much watered-down version. Last autumn, we were told that the CAZ would be introduced in January.
However, we have been assured that the Council will definitely be introducing a CAZ, albeit that it won’t be quite as rigorous as we would have liked. A date still has not been set, though. It could be any time in the next few months.
This is in contrast to Leeds (who abandoned theirs altogether); and Manchester where there are major issues to resolve. Read the following, from ClientEarth: www.clientearth.org/latest/latest-updates/news/greater-manchester-clean-air-zone. Anyway, we are pleased that in Bradford, things do still seem set, but it’s now a case of “the sooner the better”.
The CAZ won’t entirely eradicate Bradford’s air pollution problem (merely reducing it to below the current legal limit), but it is to be welcomed that Bradford Council are committed to the start of a process to clean up Bradford’s dirty air.
See the Breathe Better Bradford website for details from The Council: www.bradford.gov.uk/breathe-better-bradford/where-is-the-clean-air-zone/where-is-the-clean-air-zone