Paul Blomfield MP

Member of Parliament for Sheffield Central

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My call for action on air pollution

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I today pressed the Government to take more action to tackle air pollution, highlighting high levels of pollution in parts of Sheffield.

In the House of Commons, I said: 

Traffic hotspots in the Broomhill area of my constituency create unacceptably high levels of nitrogen dioxide. The Council are doing what they can, but have been frustrated by the Government on issues like the deregulation of taxi licensing. We need joined-up action across Government and we need it, as the High Court said earlier this month, urgently. So when will the Government produce an effective and comprehensive air quality plan?

Earlier this month the High Court ruled that the Government had failed to take sufficient action to tackle high levels of air pollution, and called for it to prepare an air quality plan “as soon as possible”.

I’m pleased the Government has accepted the High Court decision and are now consulting on a new plan, but we need more than words. This is an urgent public health issue affecting the whole country. Medical experts estimate that there are 50,000 premature deaths in the UK each year as a result of poor air quality. The Government has been too complacent and, on issues like deregulation, putting ideology before common sense.

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