Britain publishes long-awaited air pollution plan


LONDON- The British government published long-awaited plans to tackle air pollution on Friday, but campaigners condemned them as inadequate to tackle a growing public health concern.
Measures include a targeted scrappage scheme to persuade motorists to trade in their diesel cars, which have been blamed for high levels of nitrogen dioxide near roads.
Local authorities would be expected to set up “clean air zones” in the worst pollution hotspots, where NO2 levels have repeatedly breached legal levels.
The consultation says that charging the dirtiest vehicles to enter these areas, as London is planning, is the most effective way to improve air quality.
However, it also warns this should be a last resort, saying that motorists encouraged to buy diesel engines by previous governments — on the basis that they produced less carbon dioxide — should not be unfairly punished.
Other plans include removing road humps to improve the flow of traffic, encouraging more electric cars and fitting new, cleaner engines to public buses and lorry fleets.

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