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Sefton Council secures £122k to promote and improve air quality in Sefton

Sefton Council have been awarded £122,000 by the DEFRA Air Quality Grant fund to help in the fight against air pollution.

The money will be used to deliver a project centred around education and engagement on the issue of air quality and wider climate issues.

A new public interactive immersive room will be built at Southport Eco Centre to teach children about air quality. The design will ensure that all children and families will be able to engage in the topic in a fun, vibrant and educational way.

The grant will also be used to enhance the existing ‘Clean Air Crew’ website which can be accessed by everyone in Sefton and has some excellent resources for Sefton’s Primary schools. This will be expanded to provide resources for secondary school age pupils in Sefton.

Schools will get further benefit from their involvement in NO2 monitoring to fully engage with the topic of air quality, from taking measurements to finding solutions.

In addition to this, we will be developing higher level online air quality training for Parents/ Teachers/ Sefton Staff/ Residents to ensure our education and engagement programme reaches as widely as possible.

This funding will ensure that over 24,000 children, teachers and parents are engaged on the issue of air quality; resulting in positive behaviour change and air quality benefits in the years to come.

Cllr Ian Moncur, Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing said:

“Improving air quality in Sefton is a top priority. It is vital that we protect and the improve the health and wellbeing of our community

“I am delighted that Sefton has been awarded this money to educate young people about the issue of air quality and its impact on society.

Cllr Paulette Lappin, Cabinet Member for Regulatory, Compliance and Corporate Services added:

“A key part of our climate emergency strategy is engagement and education and I know this money will be used to make a positive impact on our contribution to climate change and ensure Sefton is cleaner and greener.”

The news of this grant comes as Sefton sees improvements in air quality at monitoring stations throughout the borough, likely as a result of reductions in traffic associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sefton is currently looking at a number of different options to improve air quality as part of a wider Clean Air Plan which includes considering the potential use of Clean Air Zones in the Borough. Further details regarding this work is due to be released shortly.

Officers are also investigating the opportunities around improving traffic signals across Sefton and utilising lower cost air pollution sensors to supplement our air quality monitoring capabilities.

For more information on Air Quality in Sefton, go to our website or the Eco Centre’s education resource