Blaby District Council handed more than half a million pounds to tackle ‘harmful’ vehicle emissions

Mason Moore | Hinckley Reporter | 19 February 2023

BLABY DISTRICT Council have been handed more than half a million pounds to reduce harmful vehicle emissions to use for a project titled “Let’s Go Electric”.

Banknotes and coins (Image: Alaur Rahman/Pexels)

The District Council have recieved £573,701 from the Government’s annual Air Quality Grant, which they will use for an electric conversion kit for a diesel bin lorry, and Blaby’s first electric road sweeper.

These will be used specifically in the five Air Quality Management Areas (AQMAs) in the District, Enderby, Narborough, Whetstone and the M1 corridor in Leicester Forest East and Thorpe Astley.

This is because the areas feature ‘major’ traffic routes and dense populations.

And whilst the air pollutant levels do not exceed national guidelines, they still remain higher than advised by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

In a statement, a Council spokesperson stated: “The main emission concerns surround fine particulate matter and nitrogen oxides.”

The Air Quality Grants aim to support Councils in their efforts to tackle these, amongst other emissions, to help create a ‘healthier environment’ for everyone.

In total, the Government have handed out £10.7 million to 44 local authorities across England for projects that will improve air quality and cut air pollution.

Commenting on the funding which will help the district to tackle the emissions, Blaby District Council Leader, Coun. Terry Richardson, said: “We are all acutely aware of the hazards posed by polluting emissions and the impact this can have on people’s health as well as the environment.

“Anything we can do to reduce that impact is important for our residents’ health and well-being.

“We have also made a commitment to achieve Net Zero from District Council operations by 2030 and this significant grant will certainly help us achieve that ambition.

“This was one of the largest grants in this year’s round of funding and I would like to take the opportunity to thank our officers for their hard work and the quality of the submission.”

Les Phillimore, the Council’s Portfolio Holder for Housing, Community and Environmental Services, said: “We welcome this grant so we can further embrace greener, electric technology, start to modernise our fleet, continue to improve air quality and protect our communities and once again, demonstrate our commitment to carbon reduction. It’s a win all round.”

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