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Air Quality - Monitoring

The review and assessments of air quality within South Bucks confirm that the main source of air pollution in South Bucks is road traffic, emanating chiefly from the motorways that are routed through the area.

Air quality in South Bucks is generally good, and NO2 levels have remained constant over the monitoring period. Diffusion tube monitoring data has indicated that there was one exceedance of the annual mean objective value for nitrogen dioxide in 2015 which was within the Air Quality Management Area (AQMA), which was declared in 2004.

There have been no new major sources of emissions, since the Annual Review and Assessment Report in early 2015.

Owing to the largely rural nature of the district, the primary sources of pollution are transport related sources including the motorways (M25, M40, M4) which pass through the district. An AQMA was declared around the motorway corridors in 2004.

Local Priorities and Challenges

There are currently no new local developments that require more detailed consideration at this time.

However, there is significant concern that the area will be impacted on by a series of proposed national infrastructure projects including:-

  • Crossrail project progressed to work on the ground
  • Highways Agency proposal for Smart M4
  • Western Rail access for Heathrow consultation and promotion
  • HS2 Phase 1
  • Heathrow Express Depot relocation proposal to Langley
  • Slough International Freight Exchange Proposal
  • Heathrow third runway proposals
  • Proposed redevelopment of Wilton Park, Beaconsfield

A number of new nitrogen dioxide diffusion tubes have been placed within the area in 2016 / 2017, at sites identified as haulage routes for the development, which could see increased traffic levels.