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6 c) Air Quality

Last Modified November 09, 2023

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Air Quality


Local Plan Policies

NPPF paragraphs

SP1, SP2 & policies map

109, 124, 175


The risk to public health from poor air quality has led to the designation of Air Quality Management Areas (AQMAs) in the borough. While much of the problems are associated with the strategic road network, more localised traffic generation also plays a contributing factor. Development should seek to locate in areas where the impact on air quality can be minimised, such as by the potential for a greater use of public transport. Where the development is likely to have an impact on air quality in a designated AQMA, appropriate measures will be expected to reduce the impact, while development in areas considered to be ‘sensitive’ will be required to assist with monitoring air quality.

The latest air quality reports for our borough are in the process of being compiled and will be sent to DEFRA for approval, before being published on our website. Hertsmere Borough Council  are planning  to have all the ASR reports completed by the end of the year, depending on a number of factors which includes DEFRA’s approval. We would therefore advise you to keep referring back to our website for the latest reports as they become available. Apologies for any inconvenience this may cause you in the meantime.

General approach

The council will expect development that could have the potential (by size or nature) to impact air quality in areas considered sensitive to air quality issues to assist with monitoring of local air quality.

Where such development takes place within, or have the potential to effect, an Area Quality Management Area (AQMA), the council will expect the development to investigate possible design solutions to asset with air quality.

Where development in a AQMA is unable to incorporate improvements as part of the scheme design, the council will accept a contribution to a local improvement scheme

Trigger :

Development over 10 units, or over 1,000 sq. metres of non-residential floor space, within an area considered to be sensitive to air quality issues*


Air Quality monitoring

Sites will be required to install monitoring equipment both during construction and for an agreed period of time after completion. The Council’s Air Quality monitoring officer will advise on suitable equipment.


Trigger :

Development over 10 units, or over 1,000 sq. metres of non-residential floor space, within (or within proximity to effect) an existing Air Quality Management Area


Improvements to Air Quality

On site provision 

Where this can’t be met on-site

Development will need to consider the implementation of measures to improve air quality, such as tree planting and green walls / roofs, as well as promoting travel to the site though public transport, cycling and walking.

The council's Air Quality officer can advise on possible measures. 

Where improvements cannot be implemented on-site, the council will expect the development to pay an appropriate contribution to a local air quality improvement scheme as set out in the relevant Air Quality Action Plan***



* The council identifies areas with potential air quality issues in the “Updating & Screening Assessment”.

*** The council’s Air Quality Management Plans include local schemes that the council will pursue to improve air quality.

Guidance on development proposals which may affect air quality can be found via the council's Environmental Health Team.

Any measures will be carried out in conjunction with the Air Quality officer’s view.



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