Schools: Air Pollution

Department for Education written question – answered on 17th November 2020.

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Photo of Baroness Randerson Baroness Randerson Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (Transport)

To ask Her Majesty's Government whether schools are encouraged to develop individual clean air plans; and if so, how they incentivise the development of such plans.

Photo of Baroness Berridge Baroness Berridge Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for International Trade) (Minister for Women), The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education

Local authorities are responsible for air quality in their area and must ensure that it meets the standards set in local air quality action plans. Concerns regarding the air quality in school buildings fall to the body responsible for the school to check and establish what measures need to be taken to improve air quality.

In 2018, the department published Building Bulletin 101 (BB101), which contains guidance for school design on ventilation, thermal comfort and indoor air quality. This guidance sets out the World Health Organisation’s air quality guidelines and Air Quality Standards Regulation 2010 for indoor air quality. BB101 requires the indoor environment of new or refurbished school buildings to be monitored by recording temperature and levels of carbon dioxide.

The department is collaborating with other government departments and a number of academic institutions on air quality projects. The findings from these projects will, in due course, inform our guidance and standards for school buildings.

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