Reacting to the publication on Monday of the Government’s Clean Air Strategy, Polly Billington, Director, UK100, said: “Plans in the Clean Air Strategy will fail unless there are strong new protections in law to clean up our air as we exit the EU and there is sufficient financial support (from Westminster) to make any changes a reality.
"Local leaders have consistently maintained Clean Air funding committed by Government to tackle air pollution is inadequate on three fronts: not enough funding for those local authority areas that Government has identified as having the most severe air quality challenges, insufficient funding available for tackling the wider sources of air pollution and limited financial support for national measures.”
Ahead of the Government Budget in October 2018, 15 local and regional leaders - representing some 18.5 million people - joined forces to call on Philip Hammond to find an extra £1.5bn of public money to top up the existing Clean Air Fund which currently stands at just £220m.
Brought together by the UK100 Cities Network, the group included Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, Metro Mayors Andy Burnham (Greater Manchester), Steve Rotheram (Liverpool City Region) and Dan Jarvis (Sheffield City Region) alongside directly-elected mayors, council leaders or representatives from Liverpool, Newcastle, Birmingham, Leicester, Newcastle, Oxford, Southampton and York.
Earlier concerns were raised in October 2018 'Cross-party local leaders highlight £1.5bn black hole in funding to fight air pollution in their towns and cities’ https://www.uk100.org/cross-party-local-leaders-highlight-1-5bn-black-hole-in-funding-to-fight-air-pollution-in-their-towns-and-cities/
UK100 is a network of local government leaders, which seeks to devise and implement plans for the transition to clean energy that are ambitious, cost effective and they say will take both the public and business with them.
It supports decision-makers in UK towns, cities and rural areas in their transition to 100% clean energy by 2050.
The leaders made the commitment as part of the momentum around the Paris Agreement in UK100 connects local leaders to each other, to business and to national government, enabling them to showcase achievements and learn from each other.