Alert over bad air blackspots in Doncaster

Poor air quality hotspots - Church Way, Doncaster.

Poor air quality hotspots - Church Way, Doncaster.

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Doncaster faces a ‘tremendous’ challenge to clean up its air and reduce the number of pollution- related deaths, according to the council.

A review of air quality in 2016/17 found there were seven areas in the borough where pollution exceeded national guidelines.

This was primarily due to high levels of nitrogen dioxide as a result of vehicle emissions.

Public Health England figures show there were 160 deaths attributable to air pollution in Doncaster in 2010.

The council has highlighted a number of steps it is taking to try to reduce pollution. But environmental campaigners say the measures are not enough, and more should be done.

The authority’s assistant director for environment Gill Gillies said: “Air quality across the majority of the borough is good.

“However there are some isolated areas, mainly on some of our main roads, which we have been working to improve.

“This is not an issue that affects just Doncaster but is actually a worldwide issue.”

The council has an air quality action plan, and says it has already put in place a number of measures designed to ‘improve and protect’ air quality. These are based on national guidelines.

Schemes include priority bus lanes to encourage the use of public transport, park- and-ride schemes, educating the public and raising awareness of the various schemes in operation and improving cycling facilities in the borough.

The areas the council has highlighted as pollution hotspots include the town centre along Trafford Way and Church Way, along the A630 from the A1(M) to the Balby Flyover, and the A630 in Conisborough.

These have been classed as air quality management areas, or AQMAs,

A recent report to the council’s health and adult social care overview and scrutiny panel said it would be a ‘tremendous challenge’ to make significant and long- term improvements both in Doncaster and nationally.

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