A 60mph speed restriction on motorways and dual carriageways across the UK that are within ‘Air Quality Management Areas’ is one of the needed policies for the next government to help tackle the UK air pollution problems according to the Environmental Industries Commission
The EIC have set out their air quality policy recommendations for the next government ahead of the General Election in May.
The EIC represent the UK environmental technologies and services sector and have produced a document package of future policies to help tackle ‘’different elements’’ of the air pollution problem in the UK.
In their package named ‘Priorities for the next government’
the EIC states that environmental problems should be at the frontline of the election battlefield on jobs and growth, as urban air quality ‘’has not improved and traffic levels are starting to rise for the first time since the recession’’.
Essentially the EIC is calling for the next government to support a number of their policies which they claim would come at ‘no or low public cost’ this includes setting up an independent statutory committee on air quality responsible to parliament.
The Committee, they say, would have similar powers and roles to the Climate Change Committee
, which was originally established to advise the government on reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
In addition the EIC supports the introduction of a national framework for low emission zones with genuine enforcement as well as revenue neutral changes to vehicle taxing to help stop the current trend of people shifting from petrol to diesel vehicles.
The EIC also urges the next government to reduce the current speed limit of 70mph on motorways and dual carriageways to 60mph where there are already Air Quality Management Areas in place to tackle air pollution. This is a large proportion of the UK that the EIC would want the speed limit reduced to 60mph on motorways and dual carriageways. You can see the areas which are classed as ‘Are Quality Management Areas’ by clicking here AQMA areas
They claim that no other environmental problems affects the public in this way, there are also calls for the retrofitting of old diesel buses, the continued development of zero-emission and electric vehicles, and tougher restrictions on emissions from construction site machinery.
Furthermore, the EIC states that the case for promoting lower emission fuels such as LNG needs to be re-examined. You can read some of the reasons the EU hasn’t taken to LNG fuel by visiting LNG Fuel
The trade body also urges the next government to deliver a ‘step change’ in energy efficiency, while genuinely enforcing both existing and new regulations.