Glasgow has set out refreshed plans to reduce levels of air pollution across the city.

The Air Quality Action Plan updates the actions the council will take over the next five years to minimise emissions from road traffic which are the main source of the harmful pollutant, nitrogen dioxide.

Whilst Glasgow’s air quality has much improved in recent years, there remains an ongoing commitment to achieving the best air quality possible to benefit the health of city residents and visitors.

Action is required as both short and long-term exposure to air pollution can lead to a wide range of diseases, including asthma and respiratory infections – with evidence also now emerging of links to other conditions including type 2 diabetes and dementia.

Whilst the updated Air Quality Action Plan takes a citywide approach, there will remain a level of focus on the city centre due to its pollution levels remaining of concern – details of which were outlined in last year’s Air Quality Annual Progress Report.

The Plan’s priority actions include:

  • A review of air quality monitoring – with a focus around schools, hospitals and care homes.
  • The continuation of vehicle idling awareness campaigns and enforcement.
  • Supporting the development and implementation of transport strategies which benefit air quality.
  • Supporting the expansion of our active travel network to encourage more walking, wheeling and cycling.

The Plan also supports the acceleration of heat networks to reduce pollution from fossil fuel.

Following public consultation, the final version of the Air Quality Action Plan, incorporates several additional, wider actions. These include commitments to assess future developments in the city that could impact on air quality and to liaise with the Scottish Government as it continues its review of the statutory air quality objectives.

Cllr Angus Millar City Convener for Climate and Transport said: “Whilst Glasgow’s air quality has undoubtedly improved in recent times, we remain determined to deliver more breathable air to benefit the health and wellbeing of our residents and visitors.

“Our refreshed Air Quality Action Plan focuses on minimising emissions from road traffic as well as reducing air pollution from fossil fuelled heating systems.

“Key priorities include a review of air quality monitoring around schools, hospitals and care homes, and we’ve also committed to exploring options that can improve the effectiveness of vehicle idling enforcement.

“We’ve also broadened the range of wider, air quality actions in the final version of the Plan following public consultation earlier this year.”

Glasgow’s Air Quality Action Plan 2024 which was approved by the City Administration Committee today (25 April 2024) will now be submitted to the Scottish Government.