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Council seeks views on air quality in Galgate

John Freeman
With a near constant stream of traffic pouring through the village along the A6, Galgate residents may be pleased to hear that Lancaster City Council is inviting comments from members of the public on the issues raised by its Further Assessment of air quality in the Galgate Air Quality Management Area.

This follows the declaration of the Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) in the centre of Galgate, which was made after the council monitored air pollution levels in the area to deal with high levels of nitrogen dioxide caused by exhaust emissions from road traffic.

Each UK local authority has been carrying out a review and assessment of air quality in their area since 1997. This involves measuring air pollution and trying to predict how it will change in the next few years.

The aim of the review is to make sure that the national air quality objectives will be achieved throughout the UK by the relevant deadlines, put in place to protect people's health and the environment.

If a local authority finds any places where the objectives are not likely to be achieved, it must declare an Air Quality Management Area there. This area could be just one or two streets, or it could be much bigger.

Lancaster City Council has three AQMAs - one for Lancaster, covering city centre gyratory system, extending 20 metres from the roadside (and including any property partially encompassed by this area), one for Carnforth (encompassing the A6 between North Road and Booth's supermarket access road, and Market Street between the junction with the A6 and Haws Hill) and the Galgate AQMA, which covers properties along both sides of the A6, extending from the railway bridge south of the crossroads, to just north of Whitley Beck Bridge.

Having declared the AQMA and undertaken the Further Assessment, the council must now produce an Air Quality Action Plan which will identify and implement actions designed to reduce the levels of nitrogen dioxide to below the objective. The council is consulting stakeholders, including the public, and inviting them to comment on the issues raised in the Further Assessment and to suggest actions to be included in a long list.

Copies of the Further Assessment are available for viewing on the council’s website, and also at Lancaster Library and Lancaster and Morecambe Town Halls.

"We would welcome the suggestions of residents, businesses and motorists on the findings of the Further Assessment," says Coun Jon Barry, cabinet member with responsibility for the environment. "We would also welcome other ideas on what actions we could take to reduce pollution in Galgate."

• Any comments can be sent by email to or by post to the Head of Health and Housing, Lancaster City Council, Town Hall, Morecambe, LA4 5AF. The closing date for feedback is 31st March 2010.

Air Quality Management Areas in the UK - DEFRA web site