Air pollution—ambient air quality
Air pollution—ambient air quality

The following Environment practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Air pollution—ambient air quality
  • Brexit impact
  • EU Exit Regulations
  • Ambient Air Quality Directive 2008/50/EC
  • Air Quality Standards Regulations
  • Assessment of ambient air quality—sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide and oxides of nitrogen, particulate matters, lead, benzene, carbon monoxide
  • Assessment of ambient air—ozone
  • Assessment of ambient air—arsenic, cadmium, nickel, mercury, benzo(a)pyrene and other polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons
  • Duties of Secretary of State/Welsh Minister
  • Duties in relation to limit values
  • More...

Brexit impact

As of exit day (31 January 2020), the UK is no longer an EU Member State. However, in accordance with the Withdrawal Agreement, the UK has entered an implementation period, during which it continues to be subject to EU law. This has an impact on this content.

For further guidance, see Practice Note: Brexit—impact on environmental law and News Analysis: Brexit Bulletin—key updates, research tips and resources.

EU Exit Regulations

Air Quality (Amendment of Domestic Regulations) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019, SI 2019/74 and Air Quality Standards (Wales) (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019, SI 2019/390 are made to address the functioning of subordinate legislation concerning air pollution, including and relevant to this content:

  1. Air Quality Standards (Wales) Regulations 2010, SI 2010/1433

  2. Air Quality Standards Regulations 2010, SI 2010/1001

  3. the National Emission Ceilings Regulations 2018, SI 2018/129

The majority of amendments made are changes to aid interpretation (such as when interpreting the Ambient Air Quality Directive 2008/50/EC), but any substantive changes are detailed below. These amendments are largely effective on the implementation period completion date.

For more information on the commencement of Brexit SIs and on retained law, see:

  1. Brexit legislation tracker — Brexit SIs—commencement

  2. Introduction to retained EU law

Ambient Air Quality Directive 2008/50/EC

Action to manage and improve air quality is largely driven by European legislation and the Ambient Air Quality Directive 2008/20/EC ('Ambient Air Quality Directive') is an

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