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Air pollution and health
Long-term exposure to air pollution is estimated to cause as many as 36,000 deaths each year. Air pollution can affect everyone’s health at any stage in our lives, but children and young people, older people, and people with existing lung or heart conditions are more vulnerable to the health effects of air pollution. For further information about air quality and health, visit Public Health England’s information page ‘Health matters: air pollution’.
Air Quality Management Areas
Periodically, the council reviews and assesses air quality in the borough against a range of national health based objectives.
This is done using a combination of monitoring data, computer modelling and road traffic data.
It has established there are currently a number of locations where the objectives are unlikely to be met:
- Around the Vicarage Road / Hornets junction (PDF1.32MB)
- Around the Bushey Arches junction (PDF 1002kB)
Air Quality Management Areas (AQMAs) have been declared at these locations and the council has produced an Air Quality Action Plan (PDF 253kB) aimed at improving air quality. These AQMAs are currently under review.
Read the latest assessment of nitrogen dioxide (PDF 5.92MB) in the Watford Air Quality Management Areas.
The plan has input from the council's Development Control, Planning Strategy and Transport Sections, as well as Hertfordshire County Council's traffic planners.
It is aligned with the recent Local Transport Plan (LTP) 3 and suggests a number of measures that could be taken forward.
Read the latest Watford Borough Council report about air quality in the borough.
Contact us on 01923 278503 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Air quality monitoring
The council monitors air quality at several locations across the borough.
On Rickmansworth Road close to the Town Hall, there are 'real-time' analysers that collect nitrogen dioxide, PM10 and PM2.5 particle concentrations every 15 minutes.
We also collect monthly nitrogen dioxide averages from 17 further sites across the borough.
Current and historical monitoring results, as well as annual reports and other useful air quality information, can be found on the Herts and Beds Air Quality Monitoring Network.
Chimney height approval
Some larger chimneys and furnaces need to be approved by the council, so that it can be ensured that emissions disperse.
There is guidance on this subject on the DEFRA website.
Contact us on 01923 278503 or at email@example.com for more information.