“Councils ‘must restrict traffic to protect children from pollution’ ” (Sidford Business Park?)

“Local authorities are being urged to restrict traffic around schools after a study in London found “relatively high levels” of air pollution inside classrooms, posing a risk to children’s health.

The Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL) study, Healthy Air, Healthier Children, reported data from the monitoring of indoor and outdoor air pollutants at seven primary schools in Lambeth in March, April and May this year.

Results shows the presence of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) both inside classrooms and outside all the schools. NO2 is a pollutant that comes predominantly from traffic, the study said, and can lead to asthma as well as make health problems of asthmatic people worse.

As there were no indoor sources of NO2, worryingly, the pollutants inside classrooms could only have come from outdoor air pollution, the report highlighted.

While NO2 was also detected outdoors (it was measured at school entrances for one month) at all the schools, at two schools levels came close to the annual EU legal limit and World Health Organization guideline of 40µg/m3, with averages of 35µg/m3 and 36µg/m3. Although, the study noted, these levels are averages and are likely to have been higher during school hours.

In addition, the research found high concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) inside classrooms well above the recommended level of 1,000 parts per million (ppm).

This indicates that there is a need for more ventilation, the report said.

“Poor ventilation inside schools may cause asthma, dizziness, inability to concentrate, headaches and irritated throat – amongst other symptoms.”

It added: “Children at school should not be exposed to these levels of air pollution as they are especially vulnerable to its negative health effects since their bodies are still developing.

HEAL has called on local authorities to widen out an initiative called School Streets, already implemented in 40 schools across the UK, where streets immediately surrounding a school are closed off to cars during the school run.

The government also needs to help local authorities fund and deliver a network of walking and cycling routes to school, it added.

Anne Stauffer, director for strategy and campaigns at HEAL, said: “In cities, emissions from cars, buses and lorries are a major contributor to poor air quality, so investments should be made into not only reducing traffic around schools, for example with a ban on engine idling or restricted school streets, but also to finance those measures that will lead to a decrease in car use overall.”

https://www.publicfinance.co.uk/news/2019/06/councils-must-restrict-traffic-protect-children-pollution

“Failure to cut air pollution could land politicians in court, warns UN health “

Unlike other nearby councils and Devon County Council, EDDC had yet to declare a climate emergency for the district, and CEO Mark Williams has already declared himself pessimistic about how and when EDDC can meet clean-up targets:

https://eastdevonwatch.org/2019/05/08/eddc-ceo-puts-new-majority-in-their-place-about-climate-crisis-wants-very-slow-change/

And will the inspector who hears the Sidford Business Park appeal pretend that an increase in heavy goods traffic through the village will not affect those living there, particularly the children and the elderly?

“Politicians could end up in court for failing to protect their citizens from air pollution, according to the UN’s top public health official.

Maria Neira compared the crisis over air pollution to the asbestos scandal, in which governments were accused of failing to act quickly enough to save lives despite knowing the risks.

In an interview with The Times, the director of the World Health Organisation’s Department of Public Health, Environmental and Social Determinants of Health, said that delaying action on the sources of air pollution, such as road traffic and wood burning in urban areas, would cost thousands of lives.

She praised this newspaper’s Clean Air for All Campaign and supported our call for sales of new petrol and diesel cars to be banned by 2030.

Dr Neira said that she was particularly concerned by the damage air pollution does to children’s lungs and brains.

“We know that, 15 years from now, those who have been exposed to high levels of air pollution will suffer major consequences in their immune, digestive and nervous systems and their respiratory systems will be deficient. If this is the society we are preparing for our children we are all very irresponsible.”

She said that toxic air cut short the lives of 40,000 people a year in the UK and 400,000 across Europe and governments and local authorities needed to act quickly to tackle it “even if the measures are not very popular”.

“If you postpone [action] by one day it might be hundreds of lives,” she said.

“If you postpone it by one year it might be thousands of lives plus the cost of the health system and the cost in terms of quality of life from living with asthma.”

She urged politicians to think about the consequences to people’s health of delaying making tough decisions, such as reducing traffic in cities and investing in measures to encourage cycling.

“This is something every politician should ask himself or herself every morning if they say, ‘Instead of 2030 I will do it in 2040’. They should ask the WHO what does that mean in terms of affecting the health of the people and how many new cases of lung cancer. We can calculate that.

“The question here is how many of those lives, or reduction in quality of life, are you ready to absorb. They should inform the public of those consequences and face the risk of losing votes.”

She predicted that politicians who failed to act could be forced to defend their decisions in court.

“Look at the case of asbestos. At one point some politicians were taken to court — the ministry of health in France — because they were accused of [knowing] about the risk of asbestos and [they] didn’t do enough.

“I have the feeling in a few years from now this will be the case [for air pollution] and no politician will be able to say I didn’t know because we all knew and this information has been well-established.”

She added: “There are legal groups already working on this. They have patients and people who lost family members. I can perfectly see the scenario of politicians being accused by our citizens saying, ‘You knew it, you didn’t do anything, therefore you are responsible for the number of deaths that have occurred.’”

She referred to the High Court ruling last month that a new inquest should be held into the death of a nine-year-old girl who suffered a fatal asthma attack believed to have been linked to illegal levels of air pollution near her home in London.

“Look at the case of Ella Kissi-Debrah, this might be a beginning. If you talk to legal groups, the number of cases now going to court is increasing. It might be that in the next few years it increases exponentially.”

The government has already been defeated three times in court by Client Earth, the campaign group which successfully argued that air quality plans were inadequate. The group is now considering bringing new cases against the government and local authorities over illegal levels of nitrogen dioxide pollution on hundreds of roads.

Dr Neira said politicians who believed that taking tough action on air pollution was too expensive should consider the costs of not acting. In 2016 the Royal College of Physicians estimated the costs to individuals, the health service and economy to be more than £20 billion a year in the UK.

“The health system is paying an incredible price at the moment to treat patients because we are talking about chronic diseases and those are very, very costly,” she said. “If you include that cost in your equation then the investment will be recovered immediately by the savings in your health system.”

She urged the car industry to plan a much faster switch to electric cars and suggested they were trying to prolong sales of petrol and diesel cars.

“They are not switching fast enough. They don’t sell fuels they sell the car so they should make the switch as soon as possible. Otherwise they will be responsible for this air pollution crisis.

“If they want to still sell mobility they need to stop selling fossil fuel. They will then be perceived as heroes rather than the guilty ones.”

She urged the public to “keep putting pressure on politicians” to act on air pollution. “That’s the first thing you need to do to protect yourself,” she added.”

Source: Times (pay wall)

Sidford Business Park: latest from campaigners and public inquiry details

“Documents submitted to the Planning Inspector by 17 local residents, this Campaign and Sidford Ward District Councillors Marianne Rixson and Dawn Manley have now been uploaded to the District Council’s planning portal.

Those of you who read the Sidmouth Herald will also have noted its two-page reporting this week on the submissions.

In order to allow you to quickly access the submissions we set out below the clinks to the various documents –
The planning portal page which allows you to click on each of the latest documents that have been submitted is here –
https://planningapps.eastdevon.gov.uk/Planning/lg/dialog.page?Param=lg.Planning&org.apache.shale.dialog.DIALOG_NAME=gfplanningsearch&SDescription=18/1094/MOUT&viewdocs=true

These two links take you to the two sets of documents that this Campaign has submitted. In addition to various letters from Sidbury Primary school and local residents, there are photographs, links to various traffic videos and you can also read the two consultants reports that we commissioned –
https://planningapps.eastdevon.gov.uk/Planning/StreamDocPage/obj.pdf;jsessionid=289A6B113EB8BADEB476C20911E3A5DB?DocNo=3498530&PDF=true&content=obj.pdf

https://planningapps.eastdevon.gov.uk/Planning/StreamDocPage/obj.pdf;jsessionid=289A6B113EB8BADEB476C20911E3A5DB?DocNo=3505392&PDF=true&content=obj.pdf

The detailed submission submitted by Sidford Ward District Councillors Marianne Rixson and Dawn Manley can be viewed via this link –
https://planningapps.eastdevon.gov.uk/Planning/StreamDocPage/obj.pdf;jsessionid=74B5DE4639EC037FD1BD2ABDE4C0EF69?DocNo=3498529&PDF=true&content=obj.pdf

When you open any of these links you may find it is slow in downloading, so you may have to be patient!
You should by now be aware that the Planning Inspector, Luke Fleming, will open the Inquiry on 16 July and he has allowed up to three days for it. The inquiry will be held in the District Council’s new offices in Honiton – Blackdown House, Border Road, Heathpark Industrial Estate Honiton EX14 1EJ.

Members of the public are welcome to attend the Inquiry, and we anticipate that we will be encouraging all those who oppose the proposed Business Park to show their opposition to it prior to the Inquiry opening on 16 July. We will let you have further details about this nearer the time.

We would also encourage members of the public to speak at the Inquiry as you are entitled to do. In order to obtain speaking rights, you just advise the Inspector at the start of the Inquiry. This Campaign will be speaking at it.

Best wishes
Campaign Team”

‘Say No to Sidford Business Park’ submission to planning inquiry

A picture is worth a thousand words. Words here:
https://www.devonlive.com/news/devon-news/objectors-outline-traffic-chaos-safety-2934450

Some of the pictures here:

Developer says traffic increase at potential Sidford business park would be “insignificant”

Owl says: if so few vehicles would use the business park – why build it!

https://www.devonlive.com/news/devon-news/objectors-outline-traffic-chaos-safety-2934450

Nominate ‘Say No to Sidford Fields Industrial Park” campaign for award says lical

Letter in Sidmouth Herald:

“Sir/Madam,

In light of the recent call for recommendations for the welcome, annual Acland Awards (for those conserving/enhancing our local Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty or AONB) – can I make a recommendation?

Someone please put forward the Say No to the Sidford Fields Industrial Park Campaign since they are doing more than anyone I know to protect East Devon AONB (I put them forward last year).

Their earnest activities to save this crucial part of Sidvale from unnecessary ruination is, in my opinion, exactly what Brigadier Acland had in mind during the process of setting up our precious and it seems, eternally threatened AONB. And they need all the encouragement they can get.

Peter Naysmith, Sidmouth”

VERY IMPORTANT update on Sidmouth Business Park appeal

NOTE: a planning inquiry is much more formal than a hearing and usually involves lawywers, examination of evidence and cross-examination:

Public Inquiries & Hearings

We have now been advised by the District Council that the Planning Inspector has determined that instead of holding a Hearing into the planning appeal as we previously had been told, the Inspector has now decided to hold an Inquiry which could last up to three days. The first of these days is due to start on 16 July. We are assuming that the Inspector will therefore have penciled in the Inquiry to be held on

16, 17 and 18 July

The Inquiry will be held in public and will be held locally. If you have any interest in attending then put these dates in your diary now!

In our last Update we asked you to consider submitting additional evidence to the Planning Inspector and we know that a number have done so, and thank you to those who have.

The District Council’s latest communication advises that the Inspector has put back the date by which additional submissions can be made. The new deadline by which any additional comments have to be received by the Inspector is now

17 May 2019

We again would encourage as many of you as possible who wish to, to submit comments even at this late stage. As the District Council refused planning permission solely on grounds related to highways matters you should only submit highways related comments. In doing so you might want to address matters that include –

Evidence or statements regarding the effect of noise, vibration, damage and pollution on your properties (and vehicles) due to HGV or other traffic

Effect on the health of residents attributable to air quality

Effect of pollution on children walking to school and in the playground of the primary school

Road safety issues – lack of pavements or narrow pavements, plus no lollipop lady, crossing nor traffic lights to help you cross safely with your children

Traffic delays due to congestion at the various pinch points on the A375 in both Sidford and Sidbury

Evidence of vehicles mounting and/or diving on pavements

Where possible your comments should be supported by photographic evidence.

We believe that it is important for as many photographs and/or videos are submitted to the Planning Inspector showing images of traffic congestion/difficulties along the A375 at any point between Sidford and Cotford in Sidbury.

Attached, once again, is a brief guide as to how to present any submission that you make.

Best wishes

Campaign Team

GUIDE TO PRESENTATION OF SUBMISSIONS:

Guidance on submitting additional evidence to the Planning Inspector

All comments and evidence must –

• be received by the Planning Inspector by no later than 22 April 2019. Anything received after this date will not be considered by the Inspector.

• quote the planning appeal reference for in order for it to be considered by the Inspector. The reference is – APP/U1105/W/19/3221978.

• quote the address of the appeal site i.e. the Business Park. The address to be quoted is – Land East of Two Bridges, Two Bridges Road, Sidford.

• your name and address

• state “I am against the appeal proposals” and explain whether it is for the same reasons as given by the District Council or, if not, explain your own reasons

The reasons given by the District Council in refusing the planning application were –

“1. The proposed development, by virtue of the proposed B8 uses, would result in an increase of HGV traffic on the surrounding road network, both in the vicinity of the site and through Sidbury which both suffer from inadequate road widths and a lack of footways. As such increased HGV movements within this area will result in conflicts between vehicles, and between vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians, to the detriment of highway safety. The proposed development is therefore considered contrary to paragraph 32 of the National Planning Policy Framework and Strategies 26 (Development at Sidmouth), and Policies TC7 (Adequacy of Road Network and Site Access) of the adopted East Devon Local Plan 2013 – 2031.”

The Planning Inspector asks that any additional submissions are –

• in a font such as Arial or Verdana in a size of 11 point or larger

• use A4 paper wherever possible

• number the pages of the documents

• make sure photocopied and scanned documents are clear and legible

• use black and white for documents unless colour is essential

• put any photographs (both originals and photocopies should be in colour),
maps, plans, etc, in a separate appendix and cross reference them within the main body of the document

• print documents on both sides of a page. You should use paper of good enough quality that something printed on one side of the page does not show through to the other side

• do not send original documents

• if possible, send 3 copies

You should send your written submission and/or photographs/videos –
By post to:

The Planning Inspectorate, Room 3/C Eagle Wing, Temple Quay House, 2 The Square, Bristol BS1 6PN

By email to: west2@pins.gsi.gov.uk
Planning Portal: https://acp.planninginspectorate.gov.uk

Remember all evidence must be received by the Planning Inspector by no later than

17 May 2019