We’re delighted that Leeds’ Labour-run City Council has become one of the first organisations to sign up to a new national ‘Clean Van Commitment‘. With a nationwide investment of £40 million, this initiative will speed up the switchover from high-emissions diesel vans to zero-emissions electric vans – with enormous benefits for our environment and public health.
With all the vehicles the Council operates – from property maintenance to road sweeping to rubbish collection – it’s easy to see how greening the Council’s fleet can make a big contribution to air quality in Leeds, as well as setting an example for local businesses and employers. Councillor James Lewis, executive member with responsibility for sustainability and the environment, said: “The council already operate more electric vehicles than any other local authority in England and we will be continuously moving our fleet to cleaner vehicles. In fact, we have a bold ambition to fully transition our fleet to zero or ultra-low emission vehicles by 2025″.
In Leeds North West, we’ve been campaigning on clean air issues for a number of years, particularly in relation to the A660 corridor. We’ve urged our members and the public to have their say on ambitious plans for a Clean Air Zone in Leeds, and to support the Clean Air Leeds initiative. We’re disappointed that there hasn’t been more and faster action from national government to support cities like Leeds that urgently need to improve air quality, and we’ll continue to work with our local Labour politicians on this vital public health issue.