The new Local Air Quality Management (LAQM) assessment tools are now available on the Defra.gov.uk website.
The Environment Act 1995 and associated regulations established the local air quality management system, under which all local authorities in England, Wales and Scotland are required to regularly review and assess air quality in their areas against objectives for several pollutants of particular concern for human health.
The tools can be accessed via https://laqm.defra.gov.uk/review-and-assessment/tools/emissions.html
The first day of this year’s Routes to Clean Air conference concluded with the much-anticipated conference dinner and the presentation of the annual Ian McCrae award. Every year the award is given to an IAQM member who has demonstrated their commitment to the air quality profession. This year the award was open to IAQM Associates or
Members in the early stages of their career. Entrants were asked to submit a short essay, exploring what they think the main UK air quality issues will be in 2030.
This year’s winner was Laurence Lovell, an Environmental Consultant at Arup. Laurence wrote about the importance of Particulate Matter (PM) and how in the future air quality professionals will be able to quantify health effects in addition to air quality impacts. New sources of pollution will include diesel generators for charging electric vehicles, possibly leading to exceedances of short-term NO2 objectives. Making air quality problems ‘visible’ to the public will remain one of the air quality profession’s most persistent challenges. Finally, cheaper sensors may mean we discover that poor air quality is more widespread than we currently think.
Laurence provided a rounded insight into the challenges and opportunities air quality professionals may be faced with by 2030 and gave an inspiring acceptance speech after being presented with his award by the IAQM Chair, Dr Claire Holman.
This award was established in memory of Dr Ian McCrae who sadly passed away in 2010. Dr McCrae was a well-respected air quality practitioner and member of the IAQM.
Defra have circulated details of draft legislation to transpose the Medium Combustion Plant Directive (MCPD) and introduce emission controls for certain generators in England and Wales, to stakeholders. This draft statutory instrument – the Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2017 – will be laid before Parliament and the National Assembly for Wales, together with the supporting impact assessments, ahead of the transposition deadline for the MCPD in December.
Defra notes that discussions with the Welsh Government are continuing in order to finalise the drafting in respect of the regulation of existing installations that will include Medium Combustion Plants or regulated generators. Once the drafting for this particular regulation is finalised it will be circulated for information.
Defra is not seeking detailed comments on the draft statutory instrument, and does not envisage making further substantial amendments, subject to the point noted above.
Further queries should be directed to: Control.Pollution@defra.gsi.gov.uk
The IAQM considers that assessment of the impact of emissions from STOR-type plant cannot be disregarded on the basis of limited operating hours. It is also important that emission rate data appropriate to the proposed plant are applied in assessing both long-term and short-term exposure.
The IAQM has published its position statement on Assessment of Air Quality Impacts from STOR facilities and other limited-hours-of-operation plant.
The IAQM issues Position Statements on matters that could affect the way in which Members carry out their professional tasks and on air quality topics and issues where the IAQM can provide a unique perspective from which to give a professional opinion.
Interim papers published for comment from members before a final version is produced. If you have any comments please send these to email@example.com before 7th November.
On the 11th August the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, launched his draft Environment Strategy for consultation. A public consultation on the plans is open until 17th November.
The Mayor’s office states that for the first time these plans combine strategies for each aspect of London’s environment, including air quality, into one holistic document. Alongside air quality, this draft strategy also addresses green infrastructure, climate change mitigation and energy, waste, adapting to climate change, and ambient noise.
When finalised, this strategy will replace the 2010 Mayor’s Air Quality Strategy produced by Boris Johnson. IAQM members may be particularly interested in long term proposals to phase out fossil fuels in London, and in the shorter term, the proposed requirement for the largest developments to meet “Air Quality Positive” standards. As the consultation draft explains:
“Air Quality Positive developments will make sure that emissions and exposure to pollution are reduced. The Mayor will provide guidance for developers on the most effective approach to take to ensure a development is Air Quality Positive and will review and update the guidance as required. This will ensure the best approaches to Air Quality Positive development are used in London.”