Monitoring, Review and Assessment in South Lakeland
Review and Assessment
Section 80 of the Environment Act requires the Secretary
of State to formulate a national air quality strategy.
Sections 82-84 place a duty on local authorities to review air
quality in their area. The review should include the likely future
air quality within the relevant period and an assessment of whether
quality standards and objectives for 7 principal pollutants
being achieved, or are likely to be achieved, measured against the
National Air Quality Strategy.
Any part of the authorityies area in which standards or
objectives are not being met, or are unlikely to be met within the
relevant period set out in the Air Quality Regulations 2000, should
by Order be designated an "Air Quality Management Area"
Monitoring in South Lakeland
South Lakeland District Council has been regularly monitoring
air quality at several sites around the district since April 1995.
These sites include Kendal, Windermere, Ambleside and
Air is sampled using passive diffusion tubes at each location,
monitoring monthly for Nitrogen Dioxide
. There is
also a continuous Nitrogen Dioxide monitor located on Lowther
Street in Kendal.
Historically sampling for Ozone
was also carried out. This
was stopped in 2006 due to consistently low benzene levels and the
fact that Local Authorities have no control over Ozone at a local
Some monitoring is also undertaken at specific sites for
particulates (PM10), principally in response to
- Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2):
principally from vehicle emissions and some forms of
industry. Affects asthmatics and reduces the lungs defences against
- Ozone (O3): a greenhouse gas
formed by chemical reactions in the atmosphere. These chemicals
come from industry and traffic. Can lead to pulmonary function
effects and airway inflammation.
- Benzene (C6H6):
from vehicles and petrol vapour. Has narcotic and anaesthetic
effects and can lead to non-lymphatic leukemia.
- Particulates (PM10): from the
combustion process, e.g. diesel engines, industry and power
stations. Particles are small enough to penetrate into the lungs
leading to health risks.
Air Quality Management Areas
Air Quality Management Areas have been declared by SLDC covering
an area of Sandside, near Milnthorpe, for Particulates
(PM10) and Lowther Street for Nitrogen Dioxide
(NO2) (annual mean) following this process,
although following further monitoring the Sandside AQMA has
since been revoked. Increased monitoring in Kendal and a
detailed computer modelling exercise have shown that other
road sections are now failing to meet the NO2 annual
mean objective. Therefore on 23 November 2010 the
Lowther Street AQMA was extended to include these roads, as shown
on this map of the Kendal Air Quality Management
An Action Plan is in place to work towards meeting the
objective within the AQMA . As the NO2 is
from traffic, this mainly involves measures to reduce and ease the
flow of road traffic in Kendal town centre. The Action Plan
is usually updated annually and reported in the
annual review reports produced by South Lakeland District
Council (below). However in 2010/11 the Action Plan is being
fully reviewed in light of the extension to the
Air Quality and Planning
Air quality is a material planning consideration in Kendal
because of the AQMA declaration. New developments will be
assessed for their potential to impact on air quality, or be
affected by existing poor air quality. This may be, for
example, new industrial processes, car parks, large residential
developments or mixed use residential and commercial sites.
There is a leaflet
for developers to give advice on what information we will
require to be submitted with a planning application in order for us
to fully assess impacts.
Specific information will also be required for new
(non-domestic) chimney stacks and you should apply to us for chimney height approval: a
full D1 chimney height calculation will be required (HMIP Technical
Guidance Note D1: "Guidelines on Discharging Stack Heights for
Polluting Emissions"). We maintain a register of biomass
plant in the District and for new biomass burners, depending
on their size and location, we will require the
completion of a biomass
questionnaire at the planning stage.
In addition, the Clean Air Act 1993 requires that we are
informed before the installation of any furnace or fixed boiler in
a building. This applies to non-domestic installations
only. Depending on the size of the installation and the type
of fuel, an Environmental Permit may be
We recommend that you contact us to discuss these matters at the
planning application stage to avoid unneccessary delays.
Several reports have been produced by the Environmental
Protection Group as part of their responsibilities
under Part IV of the Environment Act 1995 and constitute an
ongoing review and assessment of air quality in South
Lakeland. Background information on this process, the
pollutants involved and Government Objective levels for each of
these is contained in the reports.
The following reports are available to download:
Progress report 2004
(PDF, 1714 Kb)