The District Council has just announced that an “Air Quality Management Area” (AQMA) has been created in Rayleigh town centre, because air pollution is too high there.
The annual average level of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) – a pollutant associated with vehicle exhaust emissions – is just over the National Air Quality Objective at some areas within the town centre.
Air quality has been monitored there for a number of years and although there has been a small reduction in nitrogen dioxide levels in 2012, since then there had been no further improvement.
The area covers Brook Road, Crown Hill, Eastwood Road, High Road, High Street, Hockley Road, parts of Southend Arterial Road, and Websters Way.
The District Council must now start a process to reduce nitrogen dioxide levels to below the target level. This will involve the creation of an Action Plan, explaining how the District Council will try to deal with this. It’s not easy, because the council’s powers are limited.
There’s a bit more on the council website here.