Air quality

We have been monitoring air quality in the district since 1998.

Our air quality is generally good. Like over 230 other councils across the UK we have, however, found that levels of some pollutants are above guidelines set by the Government in some areas.

Air Quality Action Plan

We have produced a Air Quality Action Plan that contains measures to improve air quality and help to reduce the key pollutant of concern, Nitrogen Dioxide, within the Air Quality Management Area.

Air Quality Action Plan 2016

The action plan contains 10 measures, grouped into the following areas:

  • Theme 1.  Transport Measures

  • Theme 2.  Leading by Example Measures

  • Theme 3.  Measures to Raise Awareness in our Communities

Monitoring air quality

Part IV of the Environment Act 1995 places a statutory duty on local authorities to review and assess air quality within their area. See our latest reports below.

South Kesteven Updating and Screening Assessment 2015


To ensure that industry within our area is not polluting the atmosphere, we also issue permits and regularly inspect premises to make sure businesses keep within the guidelines under Part B of the Environmental Permitting (England & Wales) Regulations 2010.

List of activities currently permitted

Put a stop to idling engines

Running your engine unnecessarily while stationary......

  • Pollutes your local environment and turning off and restarting an engine causes less pollution than keeping the engine running

  • Effects health for all - you could help to reduce heart disease, asthma and lung cancer associated with polluted air simply by turning off

  • Costs you money - it wastes fuel and money whilst increasing wear and tear on your engine and a dding to repair bills. You could save £53 a year by not idling

  • Is illegal - for unnecessarily leaving your car idling - you could even be fined

What are the issues idling creates?

Exhaust emissions contain a range of air pollutants such as carbon monoxide, (CO2) nitrogen dioxide (NO2), and particulate matter (soot).

So what can you do?

  • You can do your bit by switching off the engine if it looks like you could be waiting for more than a minute. Modern cars use virtually no extra fuel when they're re-started without pressing the accelerator so you won't waste lots of fuel switching the engine back on

  • Also avoid idling whilst waiting in car parks, petrol stations, lay-bys and set down and pick up points

  • Be smart, stop/start

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q/ Does starting an engine cause more pollution than idling?
A/ No. Turning off an engine and restarting it after a minute or two (or longer) causes less pollution than keeping the engine idling and uses less fuel.

Q/ Does the engine need to stay on to keep the battery fully charged?
A/ No. Modern batteries need less engine running time.

Q/ Do catalytic converters need to be hot to work properly?
A/ Yes, but an idling engine does not keep a catalytic converter warm. They retain their heat for about 25 minutes after an engine is switched off anyway.

Q/ Do car exhausts affect health?
A/ Numerous studies have indicated that vehicle emissions contribute significant amounts of airborne pollutants, which have a detrimental effect on human health.

Cutting down on these emissions, can lead to better air quality and help reduce overall impacts on health. Switching the engine off while your vehicle is stationary reduces emissions and will have a positive environmental effect.

For more information email

Drive less and get cycling

Why not use your car less in South Kesteven and enjoy the health and wellbeing of cycling?

Getting from A to B in anything else but a motor vehicle in our fast paced lives may seem unrealistic but just a few small changes could make a huge difference to reducing congestion and air pollution here in the district.

So why not consider cycling more with the help of our handy cycling map? It details safe routes that you and your family can enjoy.

Remember this form of active travel is an excellent form of sustainable travel, tackling air pollution by reducing CO2 emissions from vehicles and protecting the environment. Getting on your bike also has numerous health benefits and can save you money too on your overall travel costs.

So happy cycling around South Kesteven and always make sure you follow the Good Cycling Code as detailed in the guide here.

Grantham Cycling Map

​​Get some cycling tips and advice from

Woodsure Ready to Burn initiative

Are you Ready to Burn?

As the colder months draw in and wood burning stove owners start thinking about stocking up on logs, Woodsure - the UK's only wood fuel quality assurance scheme - has launched a Ready to Burn initiative to help homeowners look after their stoves and improve air quality.

Air quality and wood fuel has become a hot topic and stove owners are being asked to think about the impact of burning poor quality logs has on the environment. A stove is only is a good as the wood it burns and so the Ready to Burn stamp of approval will reassure those who purchase logs with its logo that they are dry enough and ready to burn.

Find out more about the new Woodsure Ready to Burn initiative and a list of wood fuel producers who have achieved Ready to Burn status at 

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