UK Supreme Court orders Government to take immediate action on air pollution
The UK Supreme Court has ruled on 29 April that the Government’s plans to cut illegal levels of air pollution in Britain are insufficient to meet targets for 2030 and ordered it to deliver new ones by the end of the year. The Supreme Court Justices were unanimous in their decision, handed down this morning, saying: “The new Government, whatever its political complexion, should be left in no doubt as to the need for immediate action to address this issue.”
The historic ruling is the culmination of a five-year legal battle fought by ClientEarth for the right of British people to breathe clean air.
Client Earth claims that the ruling will save thousands of lives a year by forcing the Government to urgently clean up pollution from diesel vehicles, the main source of the illegal levels of nitrogen nioxide found in many of the UK’s towns and cities.
The Supreme Court ruling means the Government must start work on a comprehensive plan to meet pollution limits as soon as possible. Among the measures that it must consider are low emission zones, congestion charging and other economic incentives.
ClientEarth is calling for action to clean up the worst polluting diesel vehicles, including through a national network of low emission zones.