The Air Quality Manager to be heard.
The Committee received a verbal update of the Air Quality Manager on the initial impact on air pollution of the Ultra-Low Emission Zone. The Committee was told that currently 77% compliance with the ULEZ. Additionally, Transport for London has reported a 29% reduction in roadside levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) in July and August 2019 compared to the same months during 2018. The City of London monitor at the Walbrook Wharf has recorded an 18% reduction from 2018 to 2019 and Beech Street a 13% reduction over the same time period. There has been no change at the monitor at Sir John Cass Foundation Primary. There are now 2,500 LEVC electric (range extender) taxis now on the road in London. The new all electric taxi by Nissan was launched in October.
Members were told that senior representatives from Barts Health NHS Trust attended Health and Social Care Scrutiny Committee to reinforce their commitment to reducing pollution generated by the energy centre. City of London officers have installed a continuous nitrogen dioxide analyser in the courtyard.
The Emission Reduction (Local Authorities in London) Bill was introduced in the House of Lords by Lord Tope, Co-President of London Councils, on Tuesday 22 October 2019. Following the dissolution of Parliament, the Bill, along with all other legislations which failed to gain Royal Assent, has fallen. Lord Tope has agreed to re-introduce the Bill in the House of Lords Private Members’ Bill Ballot, which will take place following the Queen’s Speech.
The Air Quality Manager further reported that air quality monitoring at City schools had revealed positive results with nitrogen dioxide levels meeting the health based standard apart from adjacent to New Change at St Pauls Cathedral Choir School.
Work is underway to assess the 5 area of the City that meets the nitrogen dioxide air quality standards following recent positive results
Members were updated that the City of London is leading a pan London anti idling vehicle engine project with the London Borough of Camden, with funding from the Mayor of London. Additional resources have been put in place to ensure that the programme is delivered over the next 2 years.
A Member asked if the City of London can promote anti-idling and if the City can look into the New York Model of anti-idling, whereby the work of community policing plays an important role, with reward systems put in place to remunerate those who report idling vehicles to the authorities. Officers agreed to look into this and provide a report for the Committee in the future.
The Communication team advised the Committee that there will be an article in City Matters, focusing on the City’s air quality improvement and the success of the City’s work to tackle air pollution.
RESOLVED – Members are asked to note the verbal update.