October news round-up

Southwark rolls out on-street EV charging points

Southwark council is installing the first 50 lamp-post electric vehicle (EV) charging points in the borough, to improve access to charging infrastructure for residents.

Charge point operator will oversee the sites, which are located in the Borough and Bankside and Dulwich areas. The company is also looking to expand their service to incorporate air quality monitoring at charge points, it says.

Cllr Richard Livingstone and Richard Stobart, CEO of oversee the installation of one of Southwark’s new on-street EV charging points

The south London council was awarded £300,000 to support the rollout as part of the Go Ultra Low City Scheme project, managed by London Councils, the Mayor of London and Transport for London, on behalf of the Office of Low Emission Vehicles.

Cllr Richard Livingstone, Southwark’s Cabinet Member for environment, transport management and air quality, said: “These electric vehicle charge points are being installed in residential streets, outside people’s homes, in response to feedback from our residents.

“We want to help people to make decisions that improve air quality here in Southwark, be that by walking, cycling and taking public transport, or by using clean fuel. These new charge points are making it easier than ever for people who live in Southwark to make the switch to electric vehicles.”

Cllr Julian Bell, Chair of London Councils’ Transport and Environment Committee and Chair of the GULCS steering group said: “It’s exciting to see new on-street electric vehicle charge points being installed in Southwark. This work demonstrates London boroughs’ commitment to providing the infrastructure needed to deliver this important service.

“I look forward to seeing more charging points installed across Southwark and other London boroughs as part of the Go Ultra Low City Scheme, which aims to encourage the switch to electric vehicles to help clean up London’s air.”

Marylebone station ‘clean air zones’

An installation using air cleaning technology installed within advertising units has been set up inside London’s Marylebone Station.

The installation, which marks United Nations World Cities Day (WCD), has been designed by air quality technology firm Airlabs, in partnership with BNP Paribas, Chiltern Railways and JCDecaux.

Four ‘clean air zones’ have been set up in Marylebone Station

As part of the four ‘clean air zones’ set up within the station, Airlabs’ proprietary dual filter system will sit within the specially adapted advertising units provided by JCDecaux. The system is designed to remove particulate matter and nitrogen oxides from the air.

Sophie Power, co-founder of Airlabs said: “From our research, we know that there are air pollution hotspots across the transport network, where our clean air technology could be used to reduce exposure. However, these are not currently picked up by official monitoring stations. We need to do more to protect people in their workplace, as well as during their commute, which starts with understanding their exposure.”

Anne Marie Verstraeten, UK Country Head, BNP Paribas said: “Where we have an opportunity to partner with our clients, start-ups and the local community to make an immediate, positive impact we should take it, and that’s just what we’ve done here. We hope that our employees, clients — many of whom use Marylebone station daily — and local community, will enjoy and benefit from the clean air zones.”

Poster competition raises air quality awareness in Scotland

Air Monitors has sponsored a competition among Scottish schools as part of an initiative to raise awareness of air pollution issues around the time of the Clean Air Day in June and during the Year of Young People.

Environmental Protection Scotland (EPS) coordinated many of the air quality events and staff from the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) contributed by running a series of programmes with schools across Edinburgh.

Pupils from Sciennes Primary School, Edinburgh with Dr Colin Gillespie (SEPA) and Councillor Lesley MacInnes (City of Edinburgh) and to the back, Lynn Oattes (SEPA) and Daisy Narayanan (City Edinburgh Council) Photo: Ian Georgeson

Prior to the competition, the schools utilised SEPA’s national ‘Learn About Air’ teaching package; a dedicated primary and secondary teaching resource for learning about air quality and the things that can be done to help improve the air we breathe.

The module fulfils the ‘people, places and the environment’ section of the social studies element of the Curriculum for Excellence for second level pupils. It can also be used to demonstrate compliance with the requirements of Keep Britain Tidy’s Eco-Schools Award scheme.

Following the week-long learning activities, schools submitted posters, promoting solutions such as encouraging active travel, cycling and walking to school. The winning poster from each school has now been printed and is on display at the schools’ gates.

Commenting on the posters, SEPA Principal Air Scientist, Dr Colin Gillespie said: “We were very impressed with the quality of the posters, and it was very gratifying to see the level of understanding of the key issues that they displayed.”

Jim Mills from Air Monitors said: “As a company dedicated to air quality monitoring, we were delighted to sponsor this excellent initiative, which will help the next generation to better understand the sources and effects of air pollution and most importantly, how they can do their bit to improve air quality.”


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