Drivers in Rotherham are being urged to find out more about greener alternatives for their vehicles in a bid to improve air quality for the borough’s residents. Rotherham Council is launching a borough-wide initiative to promote low-emission vehicles and improve air quality — teaming up with local car dealerships to provide information about cleaner vehicles and help customers find out about the benefits of switching.
Alongside dealership promotion, a series of roadshow events and online advertising will target customers who are actively thinking about changing their vehicles. And a dedicated website — www.drivingcleanair.co.uk — acts as a guide for those thinking about making the switch, with comparison tables identifying key benefits.
The health impacts of air pollution are in the news almost every day. It is a UK-wide problem. The Government’s National Air Quality Plan showed that parts of Rotherham had air quality that didn’t meet safe standards. This has an impact on health, particularly for vulnerable groups like children, the elderly and people with existing conditions.
Most cars produce air pollution. But some are cleaner than others and the Driving Clean Air campaign will help car buyers decide whether a cleaner car is right for them. By giving the public reliable information on the benefits of cleaner fuel types and moving away from diesel vehicles, which are generally responsible for producing more harmful nitrogen oxides.
Leader of Rotherham Council, Councillor Chris Read, said: “Increasingly people are aware of issues around air quality, and as electric and hybrid-electric vehicles become more common and cheaper to buy, the prospect of never having to buy petrol or diesel again becomes more and more realistic.”
Driving Clean Air highlights how popular low-emission vehicles have already become. New registrations of plug-in cars in the UK increased from 3,500 in 2013 to more than 182,000 by the end of October 2018. Alongside government incentives and tax relief, the campaign is bolstered by lower-than-ever market prices and running costs for electric and hybrid vehicles.
With more new and used vehicles coming onto the market, ever-cheaper running costs and a growing network of local charging points — including the addition of over 30 new charging points specifically in Rotherham — the trend is set to gain further momentum.
Councillor Read added: “Over the coming months we will be introducing more electric vehicle charging infrastructure and tackling more polluting buses and HGVs in parts of the borough where there are known air quality problems. But everyone has a role to play, and that’s why we’re launching this new, government funded campaign to help everyone to make the best choice for them.”