South Oxfordshire’s Green councillors have been keeping a close eye on air quality during the lockdown, and welcome today’s announcement by the District Council of measurements showing a marked reduction in Nitrogen Dioxide emissions (1) in the district’s towns compared to the same period last year.
Last month, Green councillor and district cycle champion Sam Casey-Rerhaye wrote to Oxfordshire County Council (2) to ask their Highways Cabinet to look at how they could introduce temporary measures that increase space for pedestrians and cyclists during lockdown.
So far, all that has been forthcoming is a promise to maintain existing cycle routes, something which ought to happen routinely. Green county councillor for Wallingford, Pete Sudbury, said:
“Poor air quality kills tens of thousands of people a year in the UK. One of the few benefits of the Covid crisis is that it tells us unequivocally that traffic is a major cause of the air quality problems in Wallingford. We need to seize this opportunity to reduce through traffic in Wallingford, without closing the bridge to local people. The County Council are getting £2.5m of government funding aimed at promoting safe social distancing in towns, walking, cycling and (especially after Covid) public transport. I am urging them to be much more creative in using it to support suggestions from local people that will make Wallingford safer and healthier."
For more information contact Cllr Pete Sudbury
m 07721 510518
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