Cross party support is growing for a low emission zone to be introduced in Bristol. The Greens, the Lib Dems and Labour all submitted motions to this week’s Full Council supporting a low emission zone to help address Bristol’s dangerous air pollution, which leads to nearly 200 deaths every year.
The motions build on a Green amendment to the budget, which called for a low emission zone, but was defeated when Labour and the Tories voted against it.
Green Councillor for Clifton, Jerome Thomas who proposed the original amendment said:
“Bristol Greens are delighted that Labour councillors are now helping to promote a low emission zone to tackle this invisible killer. I also met last week with Thangam Debbonaire, MP for Bristol West, with the aim of building a stronger cross party approach on air quality in Bristol.”
“There are a number of key questions that need to be answered before we can launch a low emission zone: what geographical area would need to be covered by a low emission zone, should it be just the centre of the city or should it be more extensive and should a low emission zone include private diesel cars like the London low emission zones or apply only to vans and commercial vehicles like the proposed Clean Air Zones in other English cities?”
“Cross party support will help with working out the best way forward on these questions, and I hope that we may also get more engagement from the Conservative councillors on improving Bristol’s air quality. Everyone in Bristol has the right to breathe healthy, clean air and this should be an issue taken seriously by all political parties.”
“In the centre of Bristol, air pollution can be 50% higher than legal limits1, so we need urgent action to address this. Introducing a low emission zone in the most polluted parts of the centre of Bristol and charging the worst polluting heavy diesel vehicles would be a really good start.”