Merton leads the way to Cleaner Construction

Councillors Andrew Judge, left, and Ross Garrod display a cleaner certification banner for a site on the Merton Industrial Estate in South Wimbledon

Merton’s Regulatory Services Partnership (MRSP), a multi-borough organisation encompassing the council, Richmond and Wandsworth that is based at the Civic Centre, is helping to deliver the world’s first Low Emission Zone for Construction on behalf of the capital’s boroughs and The Mayor of London.  

Cllrs Ross Garrod, Leader of the Council, and Andrew Judge, Cabinet Member for Housing and Sustainable Development, visited a local site on the Merton Industrial Estate in South Wimbledon which used to be home to Wimbledon Tyres but is in the process of being demolished. 

Members of the Cleaner Construction for London (CCFL) team explained how they ensure that plant machinery being used on such sites across the capital meets air quality requirements under the Mayor of London’s Air Quality Strategy, checking a range of the vehicles there and verifying that they pass the stringent checks.  

Should a piece of plant fail the inspection, the CCFL scheme, which has been running since 2016, allows for the machinery to be removed from site or work to be stopped until equipment compliant with local air quality standards is brought in. 

The team of six has picked up two national awards for their work, and there are plans to roll out the scheme across the country following on from its successful launch, with local authorities as far north as Bradford interested in emulating their work. 

Over the last three years, the scheme has contributed to the prevention of approximately 72 tonnes of particulate matter, 1,600 tonnes of oxides of nitrogen (NOx) and 80,700 tonnes of carbon dioxide, equivalent in NOx savings to a 15% reduction in the number of HGVs in London or a 41% reduction in the number of taxis.