Liverpool City Region is one of the LES Partnership’s ‘Regional Groups’. Through the initiative, they have been updating planning policies, shaping the Local Transport Plan, and delivering low emission vehicles.
Sefton and the LES Partnership have developed a process guide for Sefton Council procurement. The guide emphasises the need to influence the procurement activity at all stages and particularly at the outset, when there is most scope to affect subsequent emissions. As such it complements existing technical guidance and tools, such as the Partnership’s Low Emission Toolkit.
The guide is provided as a power point presentation, stepping through the procurement process with hyper-links to more detailed information and resources. This is intended to make it quicker and easier both to use and to maintain than traditional report style guidance. The format also means that it can be easily adapted to meet the needs of other authorities or changing circumstances within an authority.
The guide and accompanying case study is available to other local authorities, who may wish to adapt and adopt it for their own use (email: email@example.com)
‘Resuspension’ of particulate air pollution (PM10) occurs when dust which has settled on a road or pavements subsequently becomes airborne due to wind or moving traffic on the carriageway. One Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) in Sefton, which has been declared for PM10, is adjacent to a number of industries that will generate particulate pollution both from the industries themselves and the vehicles transporting their products. As a result of this, dusty material can be deposited on road and pavement surfaces in these areas. Investigations carried out as part of Sefton Council’s Detailed Assessment and Further Assessment of air quality suggested that resuspension is an important source of particulate matter.
Recent studies in Düsseldorf have shown reductions in particulate matter when road washing is introduced, indicating that that reductions of 6% in the number of ‘exceedence days’ were achievable.
Purchase of the necessary equipment is expensive and would not be justifiable unless evidence could be produced that the introduction of road washing would be effective in Sefton. Defra funded a project in Sefton to investigate the potential benefits that road washing could bring. The Council was unable to hire a road washing vehicle on a short term contract, so a programme of manual ‘digging out’ and washing of pavements and more intensive sweeping of the roads was developed. Manual pavement and carriageway washing at the Millers Bridge AQMA was conducted by Sefton Council’s Operational Service department during 2010. To take account of variations due to meteorological conditions, the ratio of daily mean PM10 in the AQMA to an urban background site was compared for 2009 and 2010. This trial has indicated reduced PM10 levels during 2010 spring/summer months (blue line on graph), see Figure 1. From analysis of the results the measure is most effective during drier conditions but is less effective during the winter months due to the wetter weather/snow experienced during this season.
The trial has been continued in 2011 and extended to another AQMA. For more information,
contact Gary Mahoney at Sefton Council.
Figure 1: Effect of Road Sweeping and Manual Pavement and Carriageway Cleaning and Washing on PM10 Concentrations (daily mean)
The Regional Group held a dissemination event on 6th April in Liverpool City Centre. The event was attended by 46 delegates with presentations describing progress on each output and from Electric Vehicle recharging infrastructure suppliers.
The LES Policy Guidance note was presented to the round up meeting. An update report and the draft note will be submitted to District Planning Officers Group and Development Control Managers. Individual contact will be made with Officers from each Merseyside Planning authority to discuss developing and implementing the note over the next year. Both the guidance note and the new Low Emission Toolkit will be trialled on suitable development within Sefton.
The third Merseyside Local Transport Plan (LTP3) became active from 1st April 2011. Integration of low emission strategies into LTP3 will mean that ongoing development and implementation of LTP3 will continue the work streams initiated as part of the RGI. Districts are required to consider low emission strategies when developing implementation plans.
The group produced a report to explore the use of offset contributions to support low emissions buses. Consideration is being given to develop this further if suitable funding can be found.
The group has produced a draft Merseyside good practice guide for controlling construction emissions. This will be discussed within the Merseyside Pollution Group, before being circulated to authorities for adoption.
A trial of emissions reduction technology fitted to 4 taxis, 2 hackneys and 2 private hire, will start in May. The trial will involve monitoring for 1 month prior to installation of the equipment and 6 months after followed by dissemination of the results.
Liverpool City Region is incorporating Low Emission Strategies (LES) into their planning process and the new Merseyside Local Transport Plan. Their proposals to tackle transport emissions have been recognised by a Northwest Climate Leader award. They include measures to support low emission vehicles, piloting alternative fuel taxis, financial incentives for low emission buses, and reviewing low emission procurement policies.
Working collaboratively, the group has completed a draft Planning Policy Guidance Note. This is a first step of integrating a LES into the mainstream planning process in the region. This note can form the basis of future Supplementary Planning Documents (SPDs) which will strengthen the strategy by requiring developers to consider and mitigate emissions associated with new developments.
The City Region is making good progress in building LES into the new local transport plan. The Preferred Strategy sets a goal to “Provide and promote a clean and low carbon transport system”, and describes how their LES will deliver reductions in transport emissions to improve air quality and reduce Merseyside’s carbon footprint. LES measures under consideration include promotion of low emission fuel infrastructure, demonstration projects to reduce HGV and taxi emissions, and incentivisation of low emission travel choices such as differential charges at bus stations.. The preferred strategy was consulted on between September and November 2010, and will be finalised in April 2011.
There has already been headway on the introduction of low emission vehicles to the city region. Pilots of alternatively fuelled taxis have met with an enthusiastic response from taxi licensers, and led to a recent electric taxi demonstration day. Whilst a Merseyside Plugged in Places bid was unsuccessful, the relationships formed during the bidding process can provide a legacy for regional support of electric vehicle infrastructure.
The legacy of the Regional Groups Initiative will be reported at an event on the 6th April 2011. Ongoing projects will include an alternative fuels strategy, developing the policy note into a Supplementary Planning Document, and continued work on the local transport plan, taxis, procurement and construction dust. The projects have been integrated into existing workstreams at Sefton MBC, so will continue as resources allow.