Air Pollution

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 16th October 2020.

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Photo of Ruth Jones Ruth Jones Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, on what schemes the £3.8 billion allocated to mitigating air pollution is being spent; when each element of that funding is planned to be spent; and what funding has been disbursed to date.

Photo of Rebecca Pow Rebecca Pow The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

We have put in place a £3.8 billion plan to improve air quality and deliver cleaner transport. This includes:

  • Nearly £1.5 billion between April 2015 and March 2021 to support the uptake of ultra-low emissions vehicles. Spending to date includes:

o Over £900 million in vehicle grant support to bring ULEV cars and vans onto UK roads, supporting over 240,000 claims o Over £400 million in grants delivered through Innovate UK into ultra-low and zero emission technologies o £130 million invested to support the purchase of over 1,700 low emission buses and supporting infrastructure through the Green Bus Fund* and the Low Emission Bus Scheme o £40 million in Go Ultra Low Cities with ambitious plans to become global exemplars of ultra low emission vehicle uptake o Over £20 million across 27 local authorities, to install chargepoint infrastructure dedicated to electric taxis and PHVs

  • £1.2 billion for the Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy to increase cycling and walking and make our roads safer for vulnerable users. Details are in the Report to Parliament (see https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/cycling-and-walking-investment-strategy-cwis-report-to-parliament).
  • £880 million to help local authorities develop and implement local air quality plans and to support those impacted by these plans. Of this, £394 million has been allocated to local authorities, the remainder will be used to support ongoing development and delivery of local plans.
  • £80 million to support bus retrofit, this funding has been allocated to local authorities
  • £14 million on the air quality grant, this funding has been allocated to local authorities.
  • £75 million to improve air quality on the Strategic Road Network in the Road Investment Strategy. £39 million of this has so far been spent, with a further £21 million planned to be spent before April 2021.

In addition to the £3.8 billion referred to, Government has committed a further £2.5 billion to support a number of cities improve their local transport systems through the Transforming Cities Fund; a number of these projects will help deliver air quality improvements. A further £5 billion has also been announced by the Prime Minister to deliver cleaner buses and improved services and to boost cycling and walking. This funding will help improve air quality.

To accelerate the transition to zero emission vehicles a further £1 billion was announced at March Budget to extend plug in vehicle grants to 2023 and support the roll out of Electric Vehicles infrastructure over the next five years.

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