Ryedale District Council


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Air quality

All local authorities must periodically review and assess the current and future air quality within their areas, according to Part IV of the Environment Act 1995.


  • When a detailed assessment has shown that there is a significant risk that an AQO is not being met, or will not be met, at one or more relevant exposure locations, local authorities are required to designate by Order one or more AQMA's that cover these locations

Air Quality Review and Assessment in Ryedale

  • A Detailed Assessment completed in March 2009 concluded that, due primarily to emissions from local road traffic it was likely that the annual mean AQO for nitrogen dioxide (NO2) would be exceeded in several areas within Malton town centre (i.e. at the facades of a number of residential properties in the town)
  • On the basis of these findings, and in accordance with the statutory guidance, we determined that, subject to acceptance of the Assessment by DEFRA, an Order should be made to establish an Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) covering all such locations

Detailed Assessment (DA)

  • Provides further information about any pollutants and specific locations at which the USA has shown there is a significant risk that an Air Quality Objective will not be met

2009 Air quality review detailed assessment (PDF, 42 pages)

Further Assessment (FA)

  • Once the AQMA Order has been made, a further assessment must be produced within 12 months
  • The FA supplements the information provided in the Detailed Assessment. It is intended to increase confidence in the appropriateness of the AQMA and its geographical limits
  • The FA is also intended to define the improvement in air quality and corresponding reduction in emissions, required to satisfy the breached AQO ('s)

2011 Air quality further assessment (PDF, 26 pages)

The Further Assessment Report has concluded that:

  • Nitrogen dioxide levels still exceed the AQO at a number of locations within the Malton AQMA where there is public exposure;
  • The existing geographical limits of the AQMA are appropriate;
  • Local road traffic accounts for just over 75% of the NO2 in the AQMA;
  • Approximately 40% of the NO2 arising from road traffic is due to emissions from Heavy Duty Vehicles (HDV's); and
  • A reduction in emissions from local road traffic of at least 8% will be necessary in order for the NO2 AQO to be met at all public exposure locations in the AQMA


DEFRA accepted the conclusions of the Detailed Assessment and an Order was made on December 2009 designating the Malton AQMA. The Order identifies the roads and properties included in the AQMA.

2009 Malton Air Quality Management Area Order (PDF, 4 pages)

Setting the boundaries of an AQMA involves an element of judgement. Consideration is given to;

  • the extent of the predicted areas where AQO may be exceeded
  • the location of relevant receptors
  • the nature and location of relevant sources and
  • other local factors

Ultimately this is a matter for the local authority to decide on but all relevant exposure locations where the AQO is likely to be exceeded must be included.


  • An Action Plan must be produced within 18 months of an AQMA Order being made
  • The purpose of the Action Plan is to identify measures to be implemented in order to improve air quality in the AQMA so that the AQO ('s) are complied with

Malton Air Quality Action Plan 2012

The 2012 Air Quality Action Plan for Ryedale District Council: The Malton Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) Order.

  • We have an obligation under the Environment Act 1985 to devise and implement measures by means of an Air Quality Action Plan to improve air quality in the Malton Air Quality Management Area
  • The Air Quality Action Plan presents an evaluation of the range of air quality improvement measures that have been considered
  • A number of measures have been identified for inclusion in the Action Plan. They range from a major junction improvement scheme to reduce the flow of traffic through the AQMA, to measures that seek to promote less polluting forms of travel, such as school travel plans and raising awareness
  • A number of other measures have been identified for further evaluation and possible inclusion in future revisions of the Action Plan. Certain other measures have been rejected as inappropriate
  • An important element of the Action Plan is a commitment to ongoing air quality monitoring and periodic reviews of the steps we have put in place to reach acceptable air quality

The Action Plan was adopted by the Council on 26 January 2012.

2012 Malton Air Quality Action Plan (PDF, 45 pages)

Brambling Fields information leaflet (PDF, 2 pages, 3828kb)


  • Should be undertaken at three-yearly intervals to assess local air quality, identify and consider any changes that may have occurred since the previous assessment round
  • Will reach a view as to whether a detailed assessment is required for one or more of the pollutants listed in the UK Air Quality Objectives

2012 Air quality update and screening assessment (PDF, 51 pages)

2015 Air quality update and screening assessment (PDF, 71 pages)


  • Intended to maintain continuity in the Local Air Quality Management process
  • Are required in all years when the authority is not completing a USA (every three years)

2013 Air quality progress report (PDF, 47 pages)

2014 Air quality progress report (PDF, 70 pages)

2016 Air quality status report (PDF, 50 pages)

2017 Air quality status report (PDF, 44 pages)

2018 Air Quality Annual Status Report (PDF, 52 pages)

2019 Air Quality Status Report (PDF, pages) - Submitted to DEFRA and is waiting to be checked by their Appraisal Team.

The UK-AIR website provides in depth information on air quality and air pollution in the UK.


Emission testing of vehicles is not undertaken by Ryedale District Council. More information can be found at GOV.UK.

It is considered that the air quality impact of a roadside vehicle emission testing scheme in the Malton AQMA is likely to be low and would require significant staff and equipment resources, as well as imposing additional demands on North Yorkshire Police. It is intended that tackling congestion and the large traffic volumes passing through the town centre will be the main deliverer of air quality improvements in the Malton AQMA.

If you have concerns about an individual vehicle it can be reported to the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency.

There are no smoke control areas in Ryedale.

For further information, please submit an Enquiry Form.



Contact us

Ryedale District Council
Ryedale House
Old Malton Road
Malton, North Yorkshire
YO17 7HH

Email: Contact the Council

Phone: 01653 600666

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