Today is Clean Air Day and we’re encouraging people to pledge to make a change to help support work to reduce air pollution in the borough.
Improving air quality is one of our key priorities and is a really important part of the work being done to tackle the climate emergency. As a borough, Calderdale aims to be carbon neutral by 2038 at the latest, with significant progress by 2030. We hope to achieve this even sooner with in-house emissions and significant progress has already been made to reduce our carbon footprint.
How we’re improving air quality in Calderdale
To help meet these ambitious targets and support improvements in air quality, we’ve introduced a number of initiatives, including the use of electric vehicles in our fleet, additional electric vehicle charging points in the borough, tree planting, LED street lights installation, energy efficiency improvements in Council buildings and insulation for low-income households.
We’re also working in partnership with the Community Foundation for Calderdale to set up a Climate Emergency Fund to help combat the impact that climate change is having on the borough.
12 ‘School Streets’ around Calderdale are also helping to improve air quality. This is where the roads around schools are only open to pedestrians and other non-motorised vehicles at school drop-off and pick-up times during term-time. This helps to limit air pollution from vehicles; prevent idling; create healthier and more pleasant streets; and encourage people to be more active by walking and cycling, building on the many other projects to make it easier to walk and cycle around Calderdale.
Air quality monitoring continues in key locations, such as Air Quality Management Areas and near any incinerators or other developments that need to be carefully managed and monitored.
Improving air quality also requires individuals and organisations across the borough to take their own action and we’re encouraging all staff to get involved! You can start the journey towards improved air quality by making a pledge for Clean Air Day. There are lots of simple changes that can be made that will have a positive impact on air quality and help to protect the health of everyone in the borough.
Why not try going vehicle free today or pledge to only buy local? Pledges can start with one day, but you could also consider long-term changes to inspire real change. You can find out more about Clean Air Day here. There’s also the opportunity to use the Personal Air Pollution Calculator to work out your individual contribution to air pollution in the UK, and find out what you can do to reduce emissions and protect your health.
We must act now
Having declared a climate emergency at the start of 2019, we know how vital it is to protect Calderdale’s distinctive environment. You can find out more about this in the video below and learn how we’re stepping up our action to tackle climate change on our website.
Watch video: We are in a climate emergency.