Bradford Green Party Councillor Hawarun Hussain has spoken out against the government proposal to tackle air pollution by removing speed bumps.
The Environment Secretary, Michael Gove has issued guidelines to local councils as part of an overall strategy to tackle the dangerous levels of air pollution in many of our cities, including Bradford.
The 98-page document instructs local authorities to “optimise traffic flows ... by considering removal of speed humps.”
Councillor Hawarun Hussain however has said that these plans are another example of Central Government trying to shift the blame – and the cost - onto local authorities.
She says, “This is yet more proof that the Government are failing to take the air pollution crisis seriously.
“Theresa May’s government have already been taken to court over its failure to tackle the air pollution crisis and it has been told it needs to do more. However, by releasing these guidelines it is now trying to make local councils responsible for fixing the mess they are choosing to ignore.”
The Bradford T&A reported last year that the number of local congestion hotspots where pollution has reached illegally high levels could be about to double with sites such as Dudley Hill and Saltaire Junction close to breaching the legal requirements. [Link to Article]
“Speed bumps are not contributing to air pollution in the worst sites in our city. What is contributing is the sheer volume of traffic, the emissions it produces and the fact that the public transport network in Bradford is not fit for a city of this size.”
Looking at the prospect of removing speed bumps Hawarun said “Speeding and dangerous driving is a major problem in Bradford District and many local people are telling us they actually want more speed bumps – not fewer. Trying to tie them to air pollution is verging on dishonesty.”
Co-leader of the Green Party Caroline Lucas - who will be visiting Bradford District in September - has also said that the Government proposals don’t go far enough.
She says, “we should use this opportunity to revamp our towns and cities with investment in walking and cycling, and by ensuring that public transport is affordable and reliable.”