Coffey ‘astonished’ at Bristol air pollution delay

24/01/2019
Chris Ames

Environment minister Therese Coffey has threatened Bristol mayor Marvin Rees with legal action if he does not meet new deadlines for a plan to tackle air pollution in the city.

In a letter published online, Dr Coffey said she was alarmed to hear that Bristol City Council had stated that it would not provide its outline business case until summer 2019, given that it was obliged under a ministerial direction to do so by the end of last year.

”Local
Traffic in Bristol

She wrote: ‘This means you have unlawfully failed to comply with the Direction, and I am absolutely astonished at your delay in improving air quality for the people of Bristol as quickly as possible.’

Dr Coffey told Mr Rees that she now requires by 21 February an outline business case ‘that justifies the proposed preferred scheme to deliver compliance based on full and complete analyses including air quality, transport, and economic modelling as well as setting out the procurement, implementation route and affordability of the scheme’.

She also specified that all necessary public consultation on the preferred scheme should commence by 29 March, with a full business case by 27 September.

Dr Coffey added: ‘I should like to make clear that any delay or non-compliance with these deadlines will result in my being forced to consider legal action against Bristol City Council which may include issuing proceedings without further notice.’

However, as Transport Network has reported, two other cities have recently escaped sanction after they repeatedly missed deadlines to draw up air quality plans, despite threats of ‘serious consequences’ from Dr Coffey.

A spokesperson for Bristol said it was ‘fully committed to tackling air quality’ and was carrying out technical modelling work to explore fully all possible options.

The spokesperson said: ‘We’ve been clear with the Government’s Joint Air Quality Unit that we will take the proposals forward and we are working to ensure that the potential solutions have the highest possible chance of success. We are therefore looking at the bigger picture including measures to cut congestion and improve public transport, infrastructure and traffic management.

‘Bristol is an inclusive city and we are determined that any proposed solutions do not have a negative impact on people on low incomes.’

Separately, ministers have approved Leeds City Council’s plan to implement a charging Clean Air Zone and provided £29m in funding.

The council had asked for £13m to cover infrastructure and operation costs and £27m to help businesses upgrade or retrofit affected vehicles. The council said that £23m of the £29m provided was to support businesses.

Cllr James Lewis, executive member with responsibility for sustainability and the environment, said: ‘We have not received the full amount of funding that we asked the Government for; however, we are pleased to confirm today that a number of significant financial support packages will be available to assist owners of affected vehicles. We will be working hard to make sure this money is available swiftly.'

 

 

Also see

 

Latest Issue

latest magazine issue

Inside

  • Smart motorways' BCR problem
  • New lighting decision support tool

 

 

View the latest issue


Highways jobs

Parks Officer

£28,452 -£34,479 depending on skills and experience
Do you have experience of managing grounds maintenance contracts? Are you passionate about parks?    Wandsworth, London (Greater)
Recruiter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Transport Infrastructure Commissioning Manager

£47,391 per annum
We have an exciting opportunity for a Transport Infrastructure Commissioning Manager to join our Highways and Transport Service. Taunton, Somerset
Recruiter: Somerset County Council

Traffic Management Coordination Officer x 2 posts

£27,049 - £30,564
There’s never been a more exciting time to join Doncaster Council. Doncaster, South Yorkshire
Recruiter: Doncaster Council

Local Highway Officer

£22,183 - £32,234
The Local Highway Officer role is an exciting opportunity for an enthusiastic individual looking to join our highways team. Cambridgeshire
Recruiter: Cambridgeshire County Council

Operations Manager, Street Services

£55.017 - £58.242
This is an ideal opportunity for you to join the Royal Borough of Greenwich and make a real impact.   Greenwich, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Highway Engineer - Reactive Maintenance

£35,354 - £40,506 incl. LWA, plus £963 car allowance
We make a difference to the environment we live in. Come and help us manage our highway infrastructure. Bracknell, Berkshire
Recruiter: Bracknell Forest Borough Council

Maintenance Manager

£43,857 to £47,782
We are currently looking for a strong candidate to take up the role of Maintenance Manager at Area 6 Boroughbridge. Boroughbridge, York
Recruiter: North Yorkshire County Council

Engineer Sustainable Development

£32,234 - £36,922 per annum
To help support this key area of work, we are looking for an enthusiastic, experienced and forward thinking Engineer to... Stafford, Staffordshire
Recruiter: Staffordshire County Council

Senior Engineer (Streetscene)

£40,632 - £45,594
We are looking for 2 Senior Engineers to join our team to help deliver effective Capital and Revenue investments programmes to... Hackney, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Hackney London Borough Council

Neighbourhood Highway Officers - West and North

£28,672 per annum
We are seeking a recruit two Neighbourhood Highway Officers (NHO), to be based in Okehampton and Tiverton, Devon. Devon
Recruiter: Devon County Council

Warehouse Assistant/Driver

£20,903 - £24,491 per annum
The successful applicants will work as part of a team in a busy work environment to carry out warehouse and... Sandwell, West Midlands
Recruiter: Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council

Planning Policy Manager

£61.470 - £64.704
Be part of Greenwich's vision to successfully accommodate a high level of sustainable growth, which... Greenwich, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Refuse Driver (Rolling Advert - applications checked weekly)

£30.032 - £31.610
It is an exciting time in Street Services at the Royal Borough of Greenwich. Be part of a team who are... Greenwich, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Traffic Engineer

£32,301 - £37,491
We are currently looking for an experienced Traffic Engineer to join our Design & Engineering team.  London (Greater)
Recruiter: Hackney London Borough Council

Apprentice Civil Engineering Technician

£12,656.10
This opportunity is primarily based out of our West Offices in the heart of York. York, North Yorkshire
Recruiter: City of York Council

Refuse Driver

£30032 - £31610 per annum + (amount shown is salary plus allowances)
Refuse Driver (LGV Chargehand Driver)(starting total pay of £30,032 - this is made up of the base grade salary plus contractual overtime and allowance England, London, Woolwich
Recruiter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Corporate Director (Environment, Communities & Leisure)

Up to £83,424 (pay award pending)
As one of our two Corporate Directors reporting to the Chief Executive to form our Senior Leadership Team your... Gedling, Nottingham
Recruiter: Gedling Borough Council

Senior Infrastructure Engineer

£45.834 - £56.141
This is a great role in a vibrant and growing team; we’re looking for people with significant experience in... Greenwich, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Roads Technician

£18,812 - £23,791
This is a great opportunity for you to join Lincolnshire County Council's Technical Services Partnership as... Lincolnshire
Recruiter: Lincolnshire County Council

Roads Engineer

£25,991 - £35,745
We are looking for people to join one of our three Roads teams, made up of around 30 friendly and enthusiastic professionals. Lincolnshire
Recruiter: Lincolnshire County Council

Highways Presents

Highways on Fridays

Register now!

Latest Video