The government could yet again find itself in court over dangerous levels of air pollution, with the latest official data showing the UK is on track to miss legal targets for four out of five pollutants covered by a crucial piece of clean air legislation, ClientEarth has warned. The green law group, which has taken the government to court numerous times over the past decade over the UK’s failure to comply with EU air pollution rules, yesterday issued another warning that Ministers could once again face legal action unless they overhaul the country’s air quality strategy. Under the National Emission Ceilings Regulations 2018, the UK is legally required to meet binding emission reduction targets for a number of pollutants harmful to the environment and human health, with target dates for hitting both goals in both 2020 and 2030. However, the latest air quality statistics published by the government on Monday show the UK is on track to miss its 2030 emissions reductions targets by 57 per cent for sulphur dioxide, by 45 per cent for fine particulate matter (PM2.5), by 20 per cent for ammonia, and by 20 per cent for nitrogen oxides. However, ClientEarth’s warning came on the same day the the government faced criticism for cutting grants for electric vehicles in a move the CBI said would make it harder to deliver on the UK’s goal to end the sale of new internal combustion engine cars from 2030.
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