Clean Air Zone

Clean air over Old Market Square

In May 2017 the Department for Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) published a document entitled ‘Improving Air Quality in the UK’ which identifies nitrogen dioxide as the main cause of poor air quality in cities, and sets out measures to tackle it. The main source of pollution is the transport network and in particular diesel and petrol vehicles. The measures contained in the documents include:

  • Encouraging the take up of low emission vehicles (LEVs)
  • Support for alternative modes of travel such as cycling, walking and public transport
  • Possible Clean Air Zones (CAZs)

Initial analysis carried out by Defra showed that Nottingham, along with several other cities, is unlikely to comply with legal limits for the levels of nitrogen dioxide by 2020. As a result Nottingham is required to take steps to improve air quality.

What is a Clean Air Zone?

A Clean Air Zone is an area where targeted action is taken to improve air quality.

Will a Clean Air Zone be introduced in Nottingham?

The City Council is currently assessing whether it will be necessary to implement a Clean Air Zone in Nottingham.

What are we doing?

We’re developing plans to introduce a Clean Air Zone, aimed at improving the health of our residents. We are currently working to identify the size of the zone and the measures we will introduce aimed at improving air quality.

We’re also working hard to understand the wider implications of the new plan for Nottingham, such as the economic impact of the zone.

Why is this important?

Nottingham City Council has been mandated by the government to produce a plan showing how we will improve air quality. The plan will be submitted by September 2018 and will show how Nottingham intends to meet legal limits of Nitrogen Dioxide as soon as possible and before the end of 2019.

In order to comply with legislation governing air quality the government has carried out analysis of the levels of pollution across the major urban areas of the country. This analysis showed that levels of nitrogen dioxide in Nottingham are currently exceeding legal limits and action needs to be taken. Nottingham is one of a number of cities outside London that has been told by government to improve air quality.

Find out what else the City Council is doing to improve air quality