New air quality station will allow council to "spot trends in pollution"

PUBLISHED: 08:17 13 August 2019 | UPDATED: 08:17 13 August 2019

Cllr Louise Pepper, portfolio holder for environment and green issues, and Cllr Patrick Lavelle, topic lead for air quality, at the monitoring station at London Road, Saffron Walden. Picture: UDC

Cllr Louise Pepper, portfolio holder for environment and green issues, and Cllr Patrick Lavelle, topic lead for air quality, at the monitoring station at London Road, Saffron Walden. Picture: UDC

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Uttlesford District Council has invested in a new air quality monitoring station at its offices in Saffron Walden.

The authority said that while air quality across the district was generally good, there remained areas where air quality was "close to national limits".

The council said those areas of lower air quality were caused by "traffic at congested junctions".

The new monitoring station at the London Road offices is the second permanent location within Saffron Walden - the other is at the junction of Thaxted Road/East Street - and is complemented by a network of diffusion tubes to aid the ongoing work to improve local air quality within the district.

The monitoring station equipment, which gives accurate readings of levels of nitrogen oxide and particulate matter, is the same as used by the national network and meets the standard required by the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs.

Cllr Louise Pepper, portfolio holder for environment and green issues, said: "The automatic monitoring sites are particularly useful in spotting trends in the levels of air pollutants. They can also highlight any improvements being made due to the council's continued intervention, and support decisions when assessing the impact of development.

"In the longer term these monitoring stations will allow the council to respond quickly to incidents of poor air quality and communicate to those most at risk from the effects of poor air quality, along with health advice."

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