Air quality management

Responsibilities for air quality management

Under the Environment Act 1995 local authorities have the following responsibilities for air quality management:

1. Review and Assessment of Air Quality

The local authority must review and assess air quality in its area to determine whether the air quality objectives will be met.

2. Air Quality Management Areas (AQMAs)

If the air quality review and assessment reveals that one or more of the air quality objectives are unlikely to be met on time the local authority must declare an Air Quality Management Area covering the part (or parts) of the borough where the problem lies.

You can read about Oldham's AQMA on the DEFRA website.

3. Action Plan

Once an AQMA has been declared the local authority must develop an Action Plan, which sets out what it will do to work towards meeting the air quality objectives.

The 10 Greater Manchester authorities have produced a joint Greater Manchester Air Quality Action Plan which sets out what the authorities intend to do to meet the air quality objectives.

Pollution prevention and control

Local Authorities deliver “Local Air Pollution Control” for Medium Polluting Processes through the Pollution Prevention and Control (PPC) Regime.

Permitted processes regulated by Oldham Council include:

  • Manufacturing wood products where sawdust is produced in great quantities
  • Incineration
  • Quarrying
  • Concrete batching plants
  • Spraying metal goods using surface coatings
  • Vehicle refinishing
  • Manufacturing vehicle paints
  • Operating mobile demolition crushing plants
  • Working in volume with solvents and printing inks
  • Providing services as petrol filling stations
  • Dry cleaning processes

Visit the DEFRA website for more information about permitted processes and local authorities.