Clean Air Day celebration event encourages small changes to make a big difference.
On Thursday 15 June, shoppers and commuters at Birmingham’s Grand Central had the opportunity to make a personal pledge to improve air quality at an event to mark the UK’s largest campaign on air pollution, Clean Air Day.
Birmingham residents attending the event were be able to talk to Birmingham City Council’s Brum Breathes team to find out more about the work they are doing to improve the city’s air.
Visitors to the event were able to make pledges to use more public transport, to walk more, or to stop idling their car engines, each of which have been identified as simple steps that can make a major impact on air quality.
The event follows the recent launch of the Brum Breathes Fund, which offers a total of £4million in funding to deliver projects that contribute to cleaner air in every ward of the city.
Councillor Liz Clements, Cabinet Member for Transport at Birmingham City Council, said: “Everybody can make positive changes when it comes to improving air quality in the city, and there’s no better time to underline this than Clean Air Day. Through events like this, we can share our message and help build understanding of how small actions can make a big difference“.
Birmingham’s Clean Air Zone
Birmingham City Council introduced a Clean Air Zone in the centre of Birmingham (within the A4540 Middleway) on Tuesday 1 June 2021. In March last year, Birmingham City Council said levels of nitrogen dioxide had dropped 13% since the Clean Air Zone was introduced.
The Clean Air Zone is in operation 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, which means film and tv productions must take this into consideration when looking to shoot in the centre of Birmingham.
No vehicle is banned in the zone, but vehicles that do not meet the emission standards for the zone are subject to a daily fee. The daily fee can be paid online or by phone and it is important to note that a charging day is from midnight to midnight. If you do need to pay the daily fee you can do so six days before your day of travel, the day of travel or six days after your day of travel.
People living inside Birmingham’s Clean Air Zone have now lost their exemption from paying charges, as of 1st June 2023. It means any resident driving a vehicle not compliant with the zone’s emission standards will have to pay £8 from now onwards. The city council said it has contacted the owners of 2,382 vehicles which still had the active exemption up to the 1st June.
“There has been an extensive programme of communication to holders of this exemption and they are being reminded that, if they work in the Zone, they may be eligible for the Council’s vehicle scrappage grant,” the council said.
“It is important to note that the end of the temporary residents’ exemption does not impact on the permanent exemptions that are in place, which include categories such as emergency vehicles, vehicles with disabled passenger tax class, community vehicles and recovery vehicles.”
To find out if you need to pay the daily fee, visit the GOV.UK website.
For more information about Birmingham’s Clean Air Zone, visit our website.
Sources: www.brumbreathes.co.uk & www.bbc.co.uk/news