Funds for air quality projects in London open for application
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, is inviting London boroughs to apply for a share of £5.3 million in new funding to support projects that reduce air pollution, which could include the installation of electric charge points or helping businesses introduce cleaner vehicles.
The funding is part of the Mayor’s £27 million Air Quality Fund, which has been matched by more than £20 million in funding and resources from the boroughs and their partners. The Fund has already helped boroughs to cut pollution by introducing 25 new clean air routes in some of London’s busiest and most polluted neighbourhoods—helping pedestrians reduce their exposure to pollution by up to 60 per cent.
With the Mayor and Transport for London’s (TfL’s) support, boroughs have already installed and upgraded over 400 electric vehicle chargers and supported 5,300 businesses to reduce their emissions.
This fourth round of funding aims to help boroughs to take action to reduce harmful particulate matter (PM2.5) emissions, run more sustainable events, deliver projects to protect the most vulnerable Londoners from pollution exposure in locations such as schools and hospitals, and improve indoor air quality. The Mayor is encouraging boroughs to partner together to propose joint projects, building on the success of previous pan-London projects to tackle idling, reduce emissions from construction machinery, and create more green space.Boroughs are invited to apply by 5pm on 19 January 2024, with the projects expected to start by April 2024.
Projects supported by the first three funding rounds of the Mayor’s Air Quality Fund have demonstrated measurable benefits in improving air quality across London. The Camden Low Emission Neighbourhood delivered an estimated 28 per cent reduction in NOx emissions through interventions that included installing 19 electric vehicle charge points, improving pedestrian crossings, implementing three cycle lane schemes, and introducing dockless cycle hire bays and cycle hangars. Projects elsewhere include cargo bike loan and hire schemes to help businesses make the switch from polluting vehicles.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “Air pollution in our city is damaging Londoners' health and I am determined to do all I can to tackle it.
“We’re looking for the next generation of ambitious, local, innovative projects to improve London’s air quality – so I encourage boroughs to get their thinking caps on, consider partnering up, and apply for this financial support by 19 January 2024.”
Christina Calderato, TfL’s Director of Strategy and Policy, said: “We are committed to cleaning up London’s toxic air and together with the Mayor of London, are looking forward to hearing from boroughs on innovative and creative ideas to support effective and bold schemes and initiatives already in place. These take many different forms, from the world leading London-wide ULEZ and LEZ zones, an ever-growing fleet of greener buses and taxis, expanding Cycleways and School Streets, and pioneering low emission neighbourhoods. London is leading the way globally in its drive to tackle pollution, paving the way for a more sustainable future and playing its part in addressing an international public health crisis.”
Andrew Gordon, Project Manager at Cleaner Construction for London said: “Thanks to the support of the Mayor’s Air Quality Fund, Cleaner Construction for London successfully reduced construction site equipment emissions by 48 per cent. This shows what can be achieved with an innovative approach, support from the Mayor of London, and strong collaboration with London boroughs and the industry. Our project is now expanding to tackle polluting equipment beyond construction sites, partnering with large event organisers, road work, and waste sites. We challenge cities in the UK and worldwide to follow London's lead in promoting cleaner construction practices and improving air quality for all."