Hambleton District Council Environmental Health Officers have been monitoring air pollution within the district since 1993.
The majority of locally created pollution comes from road transport, which can build up in areas of traffic congestion where exhaust emissions have difficulty dispersing. These pollution ‘hotspots are actively monitored by the council to ensure they don’t exceed UK air quality objectives.
“The results over the past 24 years have shown that the air quality in our towns and villages is very good and below the limits,” said Paul Staines, Director of Leisure and Environment
“However one area in Bedale has just risen above the air quality limit for nitrogen dioxide and the council is due to declare its first Air Quality Management Area or ‘AQMA’. Working with North Yorkshire County Council, an action plan will be produced showing how air quality on Bridge Street will be improved. One measure could be to reduce or improve traffic flow.
“Everyone can be affected by air pollution but it has the most impact on young children, the elderly, and people with existing lung or heart conditions.
“You can do your bit to help reduce the emissions by considering alternative methods of transport, particularly for short journeys, such as public transport, walking or cycling, switching off your engine when stationary or when you upgrade your car opt for a less polluting model.”