The Environment Act 1995 requires us to monitor air quality standards in our district
The national Air Quality Strategy sets out national air quality ‘objectives’ and aims to ensure that pollution from vehicles or industry, and general background air quality across the country, do not cause harm to human health or the environment.
From a health point of view, the most important pollutants are nitrogen oxides (especially nitrogen dioxide - NO2), and fine particles (especially the fraction which can be deeply inhaled - called PM10).
If our checks show an area where one or more of the pollutants do not meet a relevant objective , then we must declare that area as an Air Quality Management Area (AQMA). We must then look at how we can improve the air quality in that area.
For copies of past air quality reports for our District, please follow the link to the Essex Air Quality Consortium website in the related content.
More information on the pollutants can be found by following the link to the Defra website in related content.
Smoke Control Zones
Under the Clean Air Act we can declare all or part of our District to be a smoke control area. This would mean it would be an offence to produce smoke from a chimney of a building, from a furnace or from any fixed boiler; or to purchase an unauthorised fuel.
Rochford District Council has not declared any part of our District as a smoke control zone. More details can be found on our bonfires page in Related Content.
Open fires and wood burning stoves
If you are thinking of having an open fire, or installing a wood burning stove, this can have an effect on Air Quality, please see the information leaflet produced by the Department for Environment and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) in the Related Content section.