We undertake air quality monitoring within the three Local Authority areas to measure the main source of pollution which is derived from exhaust emissions from road traffic.
We measure nitrogen dioxide using diffusion tubes. These are small tubes with a rubber stopper on one end housing a fine mesh that captures the pollutant. The tubes are attached onto or very close to residential properties, (sensitive receptors) in order to assess the pollution levels where people live and work. Every 4 or 5 weeks these tubes are swapped over and sent for analysis. This gives us a monthly result which goes towards providing an annual average level.
We currently have three automatic monitoring units, one in each local authority area. These measure continuously to provide the nitrogen dioxide readings for the one hour exposure and annual average exposures. In addition the Bracknell unit measures the daily and annual average Particulate Matter (PM10) levels.
These units can be found in Peach Street Wokingham, at the A339/A343 roundabout in Newbury and by the Fire Station in Bracknell. There is soon to be an additional unit at the Twyford Crossroads.
We are obliged to produce annual reports of the monitoring results including an assessment of air quality levels for each local authority. These reports known as Annual Status Reports (ASRs) and are submitted to the Department of Environment Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) for appraisal. Please refer to the associated documents below to see the reports for all three authorities in the Public Protection Partnership.