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Ipswich homes ranked one of UK’s highest for CO2 emissions

PUBLISHED: 05:30 30 April 2020

High levels of air pollution can be seen around Ipswich docks. Picture: GREGG BROWN

High levels of air pollution can be seen around Ipswich docks. Picture: GREGG BROWN

A study has claimed that Ipswich homes produce the seventh highest CO2 emissions in the country.

One of the studies focuses on air quality which is often diminished by heavy traffic. Picture: GETTY IMAGESOne of the studies focuses on air quality which is often diminished by heavy traffic. Picture: GETTY IMAGES

Suffolk’s county town has had a mixed record on environmental issues, with one in 18 deaths a year in the town linked to pollution in spite of the fact it has been previously named the greenest town in the East of England.

However Save on Energy has ranked the towns and cities in England which emitted the most CO2 per 10,000 residential properties.

During the course of 2019, ahead of the current lockdown due to coronavirus, Ipswich households were rated as the seventh highest in the country - with 145million kilograms.

Earlier in the year, another study revealed that 5.7% of all deaths in town were linked to PM2.5, an air pollutant which in high levels can be dangerous and is most commonly produced by transport.

Ipswich Borough Councillor Phil Smart has explained the data behind the studies. Picture: SUFFOLK COUNTY COUNCILIpswich Borough Councillor Phil Smart has explained the data behind the studies. Picture: SUFFOLK COUNTY COUNCIL

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However, in August 2019 Ipswich was ranked as the greenest authority in the East of England after government figures measured CO2 emissions from domestic, commercial and industrial properties across the borough – which saw the county town ranked as the 23rd lowest producer of CO2 per capita in the UK.

Phil Smart, portfolio holder for the environment and climate change at Ipswich Borough Council, said each of the studies uses different data to prove their point.

He said the Save on Energy figures focus on Energy Performance Certificates, which are managed by the government.

“Ipswich has a comparatively older housing stock,” Mr Smart explained. “It may be that the energy performance of older dwellings is not as good as more recently built ones.

“Unless energy performance in new homes becomes a national planning standard, developers are likely to successfully challenge any local authority that places what they would see as an additional cost burden on house building.”

In comparison, the study linking deaths to air pollution focuses on air quality rather than specifically CO2 emissions, meaning it is not looking at the energy we burn in our homes but the fuel burnt in cars, vans and lorries.

Mr Smart claims that more than half of the traffic coming into Ipswich is people who live outside of the town and come in for work, shopping, education and entertainment – creating ‘hots pots’ of air pollution at busy junctions and roundabouts.MORE: Suffolk recycling centres could reopen in May – but with strict new rules


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