Faulty air quality monitoring equipment in Shoreham, which last gave reliable readings in 2015, has been replaced by Adur District Council to ‘shine a light on the wider issue’ of pollution.
The monitoring station in the High Street will carry out continuous monitoring of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) levels, a council spokesman said.
Councillor Dave Simmons, executive member for health and wellbeing, said air pollution was ‘a real concern across the country’ and said: “This equipment means that we will have regular readings, giving us vital intelligence from which we can create a detailed plan of action to keep people in our communities fit and healthy.
“We cannot tackle this issue alone and I will continue to press West Sussex County Council, Highways England, and our other partners and MPs to ensure that it remains high on the agenda for decision makers.”
Air pollution has been a concern on the narrow arterial road for several years and the road was designated an Air Quality Management Area in 2005.
Government officials had recommended that this designation was revoked, but council officers have successfully pushed for it to remain due to new developments proposed in the area.
While there is no regulatory requirement on the council to carry out continuous monitoring, the spokesman said the equipment would help ‘keep up the fight on pollution’.
Members of a resident campaign group Adur Residents Environmental Action (AREA) said they were ‘very pleased’ the equipment had ‘finally’ been replaced.
A spokesman said: “It will indeed be money well spent because, once it is working, the local residents will have accurate knowledge of pollution levels of both NO2 and particulates, which cause serious health problems.”
However, the spokesman said the council needed to do more.
“A working machine will highlight the problems but is not a cure-all to solving them,” the spokesman said.
“According to recent council statistics NO2 pollution has risen across the area.
“The council Air Quality Plan dates back to 2007.
“An up-to-date strategy is crucial to improving traffic flow and pollution on the A259, particularly in light of proposed developments.”
The council said monitoring results will be used alongside other evidence to update its air quality action plan, which is being revised this year.