I chair the Monitoring & Audit Committee at Kettering Borough Council. This is what is known as a ‘Scrutiny Committee’. Its purpose is similar to that of the Select Committees in the Houses of Parliament. It gives ‘backbench’ councillors the opportunity to both take the Conservative Council to task and also to advise and suggest on improving life in the Borough.
Labour Councillor Anne Lee (representing Piper’s Hill) and I raised the issue of air quality at this meeting on the 6th November 2018. Councillor Lee requested that this was in included on the agenda. The topic of air pollution has rightly attracted a lot of national attention recently. The impact on health of poor air quality is well documented in particular children and older people tend to be more vulnerable to aggravated respiratory disorders such as asthma.
Kettering Borough Council has a statutory duty to monitor air pollution in the borough.
At the committee we heard that some of the recordings of Nitrogen Oxide in our towns have been too high. These seem to occur when there is an increase in vehicle traffic particularly where there is congestion.
Councillor Lee and I are supporting actions that the Council is taking to minimise traffic congestion and encourage the use of cleaner electric vehicles by making charging points available, but we will not rest there. We will continue to press for more to be done to ensure cleaner air in our Borough.