Birmingham publishes key actions to improve air quality


Birmingham City Council has published its Air Quality Action Plan 2021, with less than two months to go until the launch of its Clean Air Zone.

The new plan will replace the council’s previous Air Quality Action Plan 2011 and outlines some key actions to improve air quality in Birmingham between 2021-2026.

Plans include promoting behaviour change away from single occupancy private vehicle use through improving public transport and promote an increase in cycling through the Birmingham Cycle Revolution.
The council will also promote the use of alternatively-fuelled vehicles to reduce both air pollution and carbon emissions from transport, provide the refuelling infrastructure, as well as accessing grant funding to replace, upgrade or retrofit existing vehicles in key service areas.

Other plans include using traffic management solutions to improve air quality by reducing numbers of vehicles, smoothing traffic flow or holding queues and congestion away from relevant exposure locations.

Birmingham City Council’s Head of the Clean Air Zone, Stephen Arnold said: “Birmingham currently has unsafe levels of nitrogen dioxide, and we know this has a detrimental effect on the health and life expectancy of our citizens.

“The Clean Air Zone is a significant first step in tackling this issue, but – as this plan has shown – other actions must be taken alongside its implementation if we are to make meaningful improvements to air quality.

“We are already well on our way to delivering some of the priority actions in this plan, which align closely to the ambitions in Birmingham’s Clean Air Strategy and Route to Zero Action Plan.”

The Air Quality Action Plan also sets out a strategy for assessing air quality in key areas around the city, with an ambition to install six new air quality monitoring stations by December 2021. Further assessments will help to identify areas of poor air quality in Birmingham, the causes and what appropriate action can be taken to help improve it.  

A direct download to the report is available on the Birmingham City Council website.