Agenda item



The Committee received a report presented by the Executive Board Member for Public Protection on the Air Quality Delivery Plan – Consultation which provided an update on the work undertaken in respect of Air Quality in Carmarthenshire, and to consult on the draft Air Quality Delivery plan.


The following questions/issues were raised on the report:-


  • In response to a query raised on ‘Introduce a School Street’ as stated within measure G10 of the Plan, the Pollution and Wellbeing Lead clarified that this measure was currently being considered by the Highway and Transportation department.  It would encompass the introduction of a series of measures to improve the air quality around the school area such as introducing restricted road traffic entries to a specific area, including drop-off, pick-up and anti-idling area.  In addition, the Executive Board Member for Public Protection stated that the Active Travel Plan would also support the cleaner environment by way of encouraging more walking and cycling to schools.


  • In response to a query raised regarding when the Tywi Valley Path would be opened to the public, the Executive Board Member for Environment reported that Jonathan Edwards MP had applied for funding from the Levelling Up Fund on behalf of Carmarthenshire County Council towards the Tywi Valley Path and that development work continued.

  • With the encouragement of more people walking in the countryside, concern was raised that shared footpaths were being locked and which presented legal issues.  It was asked if there was a timescale to resolve the issues?  The Executive Board Member for Environment stated that this matter was being managed by the Public Rights of Way department who in the first instance work to resolve matters with respective landowners prior to issuing enforcement notices.  The Head of Highways added that legal processes were often a lengthy process.


  • An observation was raised that the plan included many ideas from behavioural change behaviours to large capital projects which both presented challenges.  


  • In reference to measure G20 - Consider a Feasibility study for Low Emission Zones, it was asked what would this look like and how would it work?  The Pollution and Wellbeing Lead stated that this was currently being considered as part of the Clean Air (Wales) Bill, the consultation on the Bill had now closed and that the summary of response document would be available in September 2021.  Therefore, more detail in relation to low emission zones would be available on the publication of the document, however it was important to dedicate a measure to this in order to ensure that this matter was explored.


  • Reference was made to measure C11 – Install AQMA signage’ further clarification was sought on what this entailed and would it provide an option to inform the public with information on air quality in real-time.  The Pollution and Wellbeing Lead stated that in relation to signage, it was important to exercise caution in terms of the messages to the public to avoid causing unnecessary alarm.  It was recognised that individuals with pre-existing health conditions who reside and visit the 3 recognised areas could benefit from receiving such information, however the difficulties lay with data protection and confidentiality. It was identified that in order to overcome some of these barriers and find a solution to present information on air quality to individuals it would be necessary start a dialogue with Public Health Wales and other bodies. 


In response to a query raised in relation to lane closures on dual carriageways and the utilisation of the zip merging method in order to cut down idling and shorten queue time, the Head of Highways and Transportation stated that the Traffic Management system utilised on the high-speed roads was designed to protect the workers and the public in terms of safety.  Signs to encourage drivers to utilise both lanes were utilised, however it was acknowledged that queues still form.  The Head of Highways and Transportation stated that he would liaise with the Trunk Road team within the Welsh Government to explore the possibility of using zip merging with a view to improve air quality.




8.1      the work undertaken in respect of Air Quality in Carmarthenshire be         noted;


8.2      the Committees comments be included within the draft Air Quality     Delivery plan consultation.



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