NDM7133 Welsh Conservatives Debate - Air Quality

NDM7133 Darren Millar (Clwyd West)

To propose that the National Assembly of Wales:

1. Notes that Wales has some of the worst air quality in the UK and that some areas have breached EU regulations for several years, culminating in the Welsh Government being taken to court for its lack of action.

2. Regrets that around 2,000 people die early each year (6 per cent of all deaths in Wales) as a result of poor air quality.

3. Further notes that air pollution exacerbates existing lung conditions and is a cause of asthma and lung cancer, and that long-term impacts of poor air quality are not yet fully understood.

4. Calls on this Assembly to pass and enact a clean air bill in this Assembly term before the next Assembly elections.

5. Believes that the act should:

a) enshrine in law World Health Organisation air quality guidelines;

b) mandate the Welsh Government to produce a statutory air quality strategy every 5 years;

c) provide a statutory duty on local authorities to appropriately monitor and assess air pollution, and take action against it;

d) introduce a ‘right to breathe’ whereby local authorities are obliged to inform vulnerable groups when certain levels breach recommended guidance.


The following amendments have been tabled:

Amendment 1 - Rebecca Evans (Gower)

Delete all and replace with:

To propose that the National Assembly for Wales:

Notes that unacceptable levels of air pollution persist in some areas of Wales, the UK and Europe.

Regrets that some estimates suggest long term exposure to poor air quality is a contributory factor in the death of as many as 36,000 people in the UK, and as many as 1,400 people in Wales.

Further notes that short term exposure to air pollution can exacerbate respiratory disease, that long term exposure increases morbidity and mortality risk from lung cancer and other conditions, and that we may expect other health impacts of poor air quality to be identified as the scientific understanding evolves.

Welcomes positive action by Welsh Government including the introduction of permanent 50mph speed limits, the delivery of the Clean Air Day campaign and the development of a Clean Air Plan for Wales.

Calls on the UK and Welsh governments to use all available legislative and non-legislative actions to improve air quality.


[If amendment 1 is agreed, amendment 2 will be de-selected] 

Amendment 2 - Rhun ap Iorwerth (Ynys Môn)

Insert as new sub-points in point 5:

require the gradual phase-out of the sale of diesel-only and petrol-only vehicles by 2030;

create clean air zones in towns and cities;

give communities the right to place pollution-monitoring equipment outside of schools and hospitals;

enable local authorities to introduce pollution and congestion charges;

set national and regional plans to reduce air pollution in Wales;

reform planning law to require impact of air pollution to be given greater weight in the planning system.


Business type: Debate

Reason considered: Senedd Business;

Status: Complete

First published: 07/06/2021

Decision due: 18 Sep 2019 by Plenary - Fifth Senedd

Lead member: Darren Millar MS