Is clean air zone just to make rev­enue?

Bath Chronicle - - OPINION -

The busi­ness case for the pro­posed clean air zone for Bath makes it clear that B&NES’ pro­posal of a class D zone rep­re­sents a sledge­ham­mer ap­proach. The air qual­ity modelling re­port lists NO2 [ni­tro­gen diox­ide] con­cen­tra­tions at mul­ti­ple lo­ca­tions across Bath that ex­ceed the Gov­ern­ment tar­get. The ma­jor­ity of these are pre­dicted to be­come com­pli­ant by 2021 with no in­ter­ven­tion due to nor­mal en­gine tech­nol­ogy im­prove­ments, ve­hi­cle up­grades, etc. B&NES claims that there is no al­ter­na­tive to a class D zone to achieve full com­pli­ance, but a glance at Ap­pen­dix A of the re­port clearly re­veals, some­what sur­pris­ingly, that a class C zone (i.e. cars ex­empt) would, in prac­ti­cal terms, be equally ef­fec­tive in fur­ther re­duc­ing NO2 lev­els to ac­cept­able lev­els since at ev­ery lo­ca­tion the pre­dicted dif­fer­ence be­tween im­pos­ing class C or D is min­i­mal. Ir­re­spec­tive of whether a class C or D zone is im­posed, the modelling re­port also shows that three NO2 hotspots could re­main un­com­fort­ably close to the re­quired tar­get, namely Gay Street, Lon­don Street (west of Cleve­land Place) and the junc­tion of Chapel Row and Mon­mouth Street. Al­low­ing for modelling un­cer­tainty, these three lo­ca­tions could re­quire ad­di­tional traf­fic man­age­ment mea­sures to gain con­fi­dence that they would not breach the tar­get in prac­tice. I in­vite B&NES to chal­lenge this anal­y­sis and ex­plain why, other than for rev­enue gen­er­a­tion pur­poses, it is nec­es­sary to im­pose a Dra­co­nian class D zone on the be­lea­guered be­lea­guered mo­torist. mo­torist. Chris Chris Bee­z­ley Bee­z­ley Claver­ton Down Bath

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