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Defra awards £2m for tackling air pollution

Picture of a foggy road for Your Expert Witness story, courtesy of freeimages.co.ukDefra has announced the award of £2m of air quality grants to 36 local authorities across England. The grants, which have been awarded to those authorities who have demonstrated "innovative plans to tackle air pollution in our towns and cities", will fund 42 projects all over the country.

In particular, funding has been provided to support the investigation of Low Emission Zones, and to help create guidance and tools for local authorities who want to decrease emissions. Money has also been given to authorities who want to develop the way they communicate the message about air quality to their local communities.

Environment Minister Lord de Mauley said: "Air quality has improved significantly in recent years; however, we need to keep striving to improve the air we breathe. This £2m air quality grant will help local communities take matters into their own hands. Without this money, many innovative projects would never see the light of day.

"In previous years, similar grants have been used very creatively to address air pollution. This is exactly the type of action that should be encouraged and I'm looking forward to reviewing the success of the projects this time next year."

An emphasis was placed on projects that could secure additional funding from other sources, so as to strengthen the project outcomes and ensure cost-effectiveness. The authorities who receive funding will need to provide Defra with a progress report by the autumn so that the success of each project can be monitored and to show how the money is being spent.

The air quality grant programme is now in its fifteenth year and so far over £50m in grants has been given to support local air quality actions across England.

Last Updated on Monday, 31 December 2012 18:48