Abingdon air quality
In 2006 the council declared an Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) in the centre of Abingdon to help address air pollution problems affecting residents. The AQMA includes central Abingdon along Stratton Way, Stert Street and parts of High Street, Ock Street, the Vineyard and Bridge Street area of the town. Maps showing the area covered by the AQMA and the monitoring locations in the town can be downloaded from the right together with a graph showing the annual average levels of NO2 at the different monitoring locations.
The decision to declare the area an AQMA was based on recommendations made following an assessment of air quality in Abingdon in 2005 which showed air pollution in parts of the town centre had exceeded national air quality objectives due to the levels of nitrogen dioxide from vehicle emissions. The Detailed Assessment of Air Quality in Abingdon 2005 can be downloaded from the right.
In 2007, a Further Assessment of air quality in the town was carried out to give more information about air quality. This report also took into account the introduction of measures to improve traffic flow in the town centre as a result of the Abingdon Integrated Transport Strategy (ABITS). This assessment, which can also be downloaded from the right, shows there have been some reductions in nitrogen dioxide in parts of the AQMA but that the national objective is still being exceeded.
The council has now devised an Air Quality Action Plan (AQAP) for Abingdon containing measures which aim to reduce nitrogen dioxide in the town centre.
This final Air Quality Action Plan was approved by the Vale's Licensing and Regulatory Committee on 28 April 2009. The Air Quality Action Plan can be downloaded from the right of the page along with the Technical Report which forms an appendix to the plan and contains all the ideas originally considered.
Ideas were were identified following discussions with air quality experts, Oxfordshire County Council, Abingdon Town Council and others. Many suggestions also came from stakeholder forums held last October, which were attended by representatives from a wide range of organisations.
All the proposals put forward were assessed to see how feasible they were, what they might cost and what the likely impact on air quality would be. Some measures included in the plan will need much more detailed work and further investigation before a decision can be taken on whether they are feasible. Some of the other proposals, including some of the highway improvements, are not in our direct remit but we will working with, and trying to influence, other organisations to incorporate the measures in their future planning and financing.
We received an excellent response to our public consultation on the draft plan with more than 100 comments received. A Report on the Public Consultation can be downloaded from the right.
Progress on the Action Plan will be reviewed annually and the council will continue to monitor pollution levels in the town to assess compliance with the air quality objectives.
Last reviewed: 22 - 10 - 2013