Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Council consider bid to cut M1 speed in Sheffield

A proposal to cut the speed limit along the M1 in Sheffield could be submitted by the council in a bid to cut air pollution.

Cabinet Member for Environment, Jack Scott, said Sheffield City Council was considering asking the government to reduce the speed limit to 50mph.

He added that the decision would be "unpopular" but would have a massive impact in improving air quality.

Transport Secretary Justine Greening said she would consider the idea.

Mr Scott said: "There is some controversy because the biggest pollutant in Sheffield, without a doubt, is the M1 corridor.

"The section of the M1 at Tinsley is a massive air pollutant."

'Low emission zone'

The idea is part of a council "air quality action plan" which is to be published later this year.

Mr Scott said a number of other ideas were also being considered, including the introduction of a "low emission zone" in the city centre and the improvement of council fleet vehicles.

Ms Greening said: "I'm not sure if it's viable but of course I'm always interested to hear suggestions.

"I'm sure I'll get chance to hopefully meet up with Sheffield City Council over the next few weeks and talk to them about some of their ideas."

The council said poor air quality accounted for about 500 premature deaths in the city, each year.

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