Transport secretary Chris Grayling has threaten drivers who leave their engine on while parked with ‘tougher penalties’ in an effort to reduce air pollution.
Vehicle idling is a major factor in poor air quality, particularly in areas with large numbers of waiting vehicles, such as outside schools, at taxi ranks and bus stations.
An idling car produces enough exhaust emissions to fill 150 balloons with harmful chemicals, including cyanide, NOx and PM2.5, every minute it is stationary.
Councils already have the power to fine drivers, but the Department for Transport has announced it will launch a public consultation this summer into how to strengthen these powers.
‘We are determined to crack down on drivers who pollute our communities by leaving their engines running, particularly outside school gates where our children are breathing in this toxic air,’ said Mr Grayling.
‘Putting a stop to idling is an easy way to drive down dangerously high levels of pollution, reducing its impact on the environment and our health.’