Today (22nd May 2018), Secretary of State for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Michael Gove, published the 2018 draft Clean Air Strategy. DEFRA has also opened a consultation into the strategy that will close on 14th August 2018. The strategy follows the UK being referred to the European court of justice for failing to tackle illegal levels of air pollution, which could lead to a multi million euro fine if the UK fails to address the issue.
Ahead of the launch during a visit to meet air quality researchers at Imperial College, Mr Gove said: “Government cannot act alone in tackling air pollution. Our strategy sets out how we will work with businesses, farmers, industry and households to develop innovative new solutions to reduce emissions. It also highlights how we can all take action and play an important role in cleaning up our air.”
The strategy has already seen criticism from Green MP Caroline Lucas; chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Air Pollution, Geraint Davies; representatives of Greenpeace; and members of the Labour Party for allegedly being inadequate and falling short of the Government’s obligation.
The draft strategy and consultation information can be found here – https://consult.defra.gov.uk/environmental-quality/clean-air-strategy-consultation/
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