Given the recent news that pollution in Newbury is at dangerous levels the Green Party calls for a low emission zone for our West Berkshire towns and communities. The zone would be based upon the model used in London to discourage the most polluting heavy vehicles from using the zones by imposing a pollution road toll. By using a zoned approach the large vehicles will be prevented from diverting to minor roads and residential areas.
Current West Berks Council thinking diverts HGV's to/from Basingstoke, via the Tothill roundabout, on a circuitous route five miles longer. This will only marginally reduce pollution around the town, but will increase the fuel used and carbon emissions in general.
The money made from the toll must be invested back into the local communities via the local Parish Council's.
Adrian Hollister from the Green Party said, "I was shocked but not surprised that it took Newbury Weekly News to reveal the pollution problems in Newbury. I was even more shocked to find Geoff Findlay (Conservative, Cold Ash) the environmental spokesman for West Berks Council is advocating driving faster as the solution to the problem. Not only have the Council withheld the health risks from the general public (who could have taken steps to avoid the areas) but their own environment spokesman seems to know nothing about the causes of pollution.
Given the health risks that our residents are exposed to and with no sensible suggestions from West Berks Council the Green Party call for West Berkshire Council to act promptly and implement a low emission zone similar to that used in London. This would see the most polluting vehicles discouraged from using our towns and areas of population."
"We will try to devise ways of reducing traffic through there, or speeding the traffic up" – way to go Geoff – faster must be less pollution right? Have you any idea about the environment? Have you any idea how vehicles generate pollution? Why are you in your role as Environment spokesman for West Berks Council?