The Bickerstaffe Record

Cotterill on the Council

Ormskirk air pollution: one year gone missing?

10.22.09 | Comment?

This is what the report to last night’s council on the Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) in Ormskirk (reported on in the local press here) says:

‘In the 2006 Update and Screening Assessment it was concluded that there was a potential exceedence of the objective for Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) in Stanley Street Ormskirk and that a Detailed Assessment (DA) should be carried out. Members will recall from previous reports that NO2 is a gas, which is principally emitted from vehicle exhausts. Stanley Street posed particular problems due to the high volumes of traffic, the traffic lights and the close proximity of the houses to the road.

 The DA produced in August 2006 concluded that the automatic monitoring that had taken place in Stanley Street, did not demonstrate that an AQMA was needed. However, the subsequent 2007 Progress Report highlighted a potential problem in the Moor Street area of Ormskirk (near to the bus depot).

 Following a further 12 months of monitoring, which re-iterated the problem, a Detailed Assessment to be conducted by consultant was commissioned, following a successful growth bid for funding.

 Bureau Veritas were contracted by W.L.B.C. to look at all of our monitoring data and produce a computer model of the levels of NO2 in the area of concern. Their report was submitted to DEFRA in the middle of August for approval.

 The consultants concluded that there was an area of Moor Street and the adjoining top end of Stanley Street, which were exceeding the air quality objective for NO2.’

 Look at the timelines:

  •  August 2006 – DA says AQMA not needed
  • Sometime in 2007 (August?) – progress report highlights potential problem
  • 12 months later, sometime in 2008 (August?) – problem confirmed, consultant commissioned
  • August 2009 – consultant report submitted to DEFRA

 There appears to be about a year missing. 

What happened to it?   Whatever’s happened, it’s taken more than two years to get from the identification of a possible problem to an agreement that there should be a public consultation about what to do.

I asked about the ‘lost year’ at council last night.  I said there might be some follow up.

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