It’s official – Cogan is to become an Air Quality Management Area.
This decision is not before time. I pointed out here that the air pollution in Cogan has been beyond European legal limits since at least 2006:
What on earth is going on here? What have the people of Windsor Road done to deserve such negligence? The Vale’s forecasting and reporting has been chronically optimistic year after year after year after year after year afteryear after year, and the pollution load – particularly at the 154 Windsor Road station – has consistently breached European limits set down in the Ambient Air Quality Directive. And the Vale Council has done absolutely nothing to remedy the situation.
I even went as far as to ask the Welsh Government why no action had been taken – you can see their response and my analysis here:
I don’t very much care for the idea of Penarth taxpayers shelling out their share of millions of pounds in European Commission fines for the Vale’s failure to take air pollution seriously. But I care even less for the idea that the residents of Cogan are being subject to illegal pollution loadings year after year after year because councillors in the Vale haven’t had the gumption to confess there’s a problem. Perhaps the time has come for a complaint to the European Commission?
Those of you who are sharp-eyed will also have seen something of interest in this post:
And perhaps unlike the thrusting, letter-writing, 4×4-driving upper echelons of Penarth, some of the residents of polluted Cogan are just too busy figuring out a way to make ends meet to bother kicking up a fuss or getting political parties excited in their issues. Perhaps the idea of sending off a complaint to the European Commission over their horrendous air quality is just a bit daunting. [Note to Cogan residents – someone’s already done that on your behalf].
For information – there’s no news on the European complaint as yet.
I said at the start of this article that Cogan is to become an Air Quality Management Area. I based that on recommendation 5.4 in the Detailed Assessment dated May 2012:
It is therefore recommended that an AQMA is declared to include, as a minimum, those residential properties with concentrations above 36 µg/m3.
But I’m puzzled. Because I’ve seen no official Vale announcement to that effect, and neither has Defra.
Why on earth would an authority be sitting on a recommendation for 7 months that something ought to be done to improve public health by controlling air pollution?
Perhaps that’s a question that Councillor Neil Moore, who has Cabinet responsibility for environmental health and pollution, and who sits on Environmental Protection UK, should answer. Anything less than swift action on this must call into question both his leadership and Labour’s commitment to the long, long-suffering people of Cogan.