Publication - Research and analysis

National Planning Framework 4 - improving air quality outcomes: research

Published: 25 Nov 2020

Research findings on improving air quality outcomes that will help inform policy development for National Planning Framework 4.

National Planning Framework 4 - improving air quality outcomes: research
Annex C: NICE Quality Standard Q181

Annex C: NICE Quality Standard Q181

QS 181 ‘Air pollution: outdoor air quality and health’ contains quality statement 1 on strategic plans and quality statement 2 on planning applications and was therefore considered of relevance to this project. Quality statements 1 and 2 are considered in detail in the following sections.

Quality statement 1: Strategic plans, is as follows:

“Local authorities identify in the Local Plan, local transport plan and other key strategies how they will address air pollution, including enabling zero- and low-emission travel and developing buildings and spaces to reduce exposure to air pollution.”

The rationale behind quality statement 1 is stated as follows:

“Local authorities should be strategic leaders of local initiatives to address air pollution, working in a coordinated way with key partners to ensure a consistent and planned approach. Identifying their approach to air pollution in the Local Plan, local transport plan and other key strategies will provide a clear framework for joined-up local action. The key components of their approach should include enabling zero- and low-emission travel (including active travel such as cycling or walking) and developing buildings and spaces to reduce exposure to air pollution.”

Quality statement 2: Planning applications, is as follows:

“Local planning authorities assess proposals to minimise and mitigate road-traffic-related air pollution in planning applications for major developments.”

The rationale behind quality statement 2 is stated as follows:

“The built environment can affect the emission of road-traffic-related air pollutants by influencing how and how much people travel, for example, by ensuring good connections to walking and cycling networks. Buildings can affect the way air pollutants are dispersed through street design and the resulting impact on air flow. Addressing air pollution at the planning stage for major developments may reduce the need for more expensive remedial action at a later stage. It can also help to maintain people's health and wellbeing during and after construction. Assessing proposals to minimise and mitigate road-traffic-related air pollution will help to ensure they are robust and evidence based.”


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