1. ITV Report

Southampton 'firmly committed to improving pollution levels'

Poster campaign calling for a reduction in Southampton's pollution levels Photo:

Southampton City Council has responded to the erection of a critical poster campaign advertising the fact that the area has high levels of pollution.

The Healthy Air Campaign said their poster highlights the fact that more needs to be done to tackle the problem. They are running the 'Help Britain Breathe' initiative, and similar billboards are also going up in Birmingham, Leeds, Liverpool and Manchester.

A Southampton City Council representative said that the authority is 'firmly committed to improving air quality and cutting harmful emissions to protect the health of residents in the city.'.

Among the measures detailed are:

  • • Building a network of electric charging points across the city to begin in early 2018.
  • • An upcoming ‘No-Idling’ campaign to promote the benefits of turning off engines of stationary vehicles.
  • • Car parking concessions for electric vehicle users in SCC car parks.
  • • Transforming 20% of our own fleet vehicles to electric by 2020.
  • • Supporting the M27 consultation being carried out by Highways England to improve traffic flows into the city.
  • • Upgrading the railway infrastructure for freight into and out of the city, subsequently reducing the amount of rail haulage journeys required.
  • • Championing rail travel – upgrading Southampton station with a £7 million investment.
  • • My Journey, a platform for sustainable travel information and advice in and around the Southampton area.
  • • Being a lead city on National Clean Air Day in June 2017 where the city council engaged with over 2,000 people and provided information and advice on reducing emissions
There is a lot of urban and industrial traffic on the city's roads

The city council also referred people to look at its Clean Air Strategy online.

The World Health Organisation has recently labelled Southampton as one of the UK's most polluted cities. The problem is exacerbated by heavy road traffic. ITV Meridian reported on the city's efforts as one of six cities to take part in the UK's first National Clean Air Day in June.