Eastbourne Borough Council and Eastbourne & District Friends of the Earth have agreed to work together on the issue of air pollution.
Councillor David Tutt, Leader of the Council, met with Andrew Durling, Co-ordinator of Eastbourne and District Friends of the Earth, following a report published last month by the World Health Organisation which claimed air pollution in the town was above its safety levels.
This is despite Eastbourne consistently remaining well below both EU and UK air quality limits.
Councillor Tutt said: “Our air quality levels are at almost half the 40 micrograms per cubic metre (PM10) guideline set by the government and the EU.
“However, we are open and willing to find out more about improving these levels wherever possible for the benefit of people visiting, living and working in Eastbourne. We are looking forward to working with the local Friends of the Earth group to identify ways this can be achieved.”
Mr Durling added: “Air pollution in the UK is a public health emergency, causing over 40,000 premature deaths a year as well as increased ill health, especially amongst the very young and the elderly.
“Most towns and cities in the UK have air pollution that is above World Health Organisation guidelines, which are much stricter than the EU legal limits because recent research shows how extremely toxic certain forms of air pollution are, such as the diesel fumes from road traffic.
“We in Eastbourne & District Friends of the Earth are delighted that Eastbourne Borough Council is being pro-active on this issue and we look forward to a constructive and positive engagement with the Council in order to help make Eastbourne's air cleaner and safer for us all.”
The Council and Eastbourne & District Friends of the Earth will be holding further meetings regarding air pollution.