Andrew Smith MP

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Andrew welcomes air quality improvement in Oxford's LEZ

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Andrew welcomed the news that Oxford's low emissions zone (LEZ) is having a significant effect on levels of nitrogen dioxide in the city.

Introduced in January 2014 - the second in the UK outside London - the LEZ's early results suggest that there have been no breaches of the hourly mean for nitrogen dioxide this year, in contrast to 10 breaches last year and 60 in 2012.

In addition, measurements of the annual mean nitrogen dioxide levels on the roads with historically high levels of nitrogen dioxide - High Street and St Aldate's Street - have also fallen this year.

Andrew said, "I welcome the improvement of our air quality in Oxford as a result of the Labour-run City Council's introduction of a low emissions zone."

"More work must be done to improve air quality nationally, however, and I am pressing the Government to develop a national framework to help local authorities follow Oxford's lead."

"Unfortunately, the Environment Secretary is not giving this matter the priority that it deserves. In a reply to my written parliamentary question asking for a timetable for putting together an action plan to improve air quality, I was told that the earliest date would be December 2015." The response to Andrew's written parliamentary question is here: http://goo.gl/2vLvlx

"I have written to the Environment Secretary to make plain that it is unacceptable to leave each local authority making its own way, at different speeds, when a national framework could help to tackle our poor air quality more quickly and in a coordinated way." 

Andrew has campaigned for cleaner air by opposing a Coalition Government plan to remove important responsibilities for air quality monitoring and management from local authorities (pictured here).

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