How we're improving air quality

We are committed to tackling the London wide air quality crisis head-on. We launched an ambitious new Air Quality Strategy in 2017, recently banned engine idling and have supported local schools with a London air quality audit, that will help them to combat air pollution in the future.

We have installed extra electric car charge points, brought schools together to talk about air quality, added more electric vehicles to our fleet and introduced a 20mph speed limit on every road that Southwark Council controls, to reduce collisions and encourage more sustainable travel, such as walking and cycling. 

We also work with a range of organisations, businesses and local groups to make a difference in local areas. Through our work with Better Bankside and Team London Bridge, we have supported the introduction of low emission walking routes and introduced a low emission business neighbourhood on Borough High Street

Our new School Streets campaign, which launched recently, encourages schools in suitable locations to work together with parents and the council, to close roads outside schools at pick up and drop off times, helping to make the air cleaner and roads safer for school children.

All of this is underpinned by our rigorous monitoring of local air and controls on the release of pollutants, through the enforcement of air quality laws. With these and many more actions, we hope to work with the people who live, work and study in Southwark, to help improve London’s air quality.

We have declared the entire borough, apart from the area to the south of the A205, an Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) (pdf, 350kb) and;

We plan our services to limit pollutants in the air

We have many services that impact on air quality including development control, transport planning, management of our vehicle fleet, management of our buildings and estate, how we buy goods and services, etc.

We're leading by example. We were one of the first councils to introduce 'green' council vehicles that run on either natural gas or electricity.

We limit others from polluting the borough

We have strict rules for all applications that may have a negative effect on air quality within the borough. They cover the following areas:

  • planning applications
  • fleet & vehicle management
  • parking and traffic control
  • green travel and walking

We regulate premises that are required to be permitted under the Local Authority Pollution Control regime.

We enforce the air quality provisions of statutory nuisance legislation.

We enforce the provisions of the Clean Air Act 1993.

We limit others polluting in the borough, through advice, planning and enforcement

Page last updated: 08 November 2018