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Newton Air Quality Management Area

An Air Quality Management Area in Newton was declared in July 2016 due to exceedances of fine particulates (PM10). A draft Air Quality Action Plan (AQAP) has been developed and will be subject to public consultation. The AQAP will set out measures to reduce air pollution in Newton.


PUBLIC CONSULTATION- Revocation of Newton Air Quality Management Area Order 2016

West Lothian Council has statutory obligations to monitor air quality and to take corrective action where specified pollutant concentrations are above permitted objective levels. The council has a statutory duty to provide an annual progress report to the Scottish Government in regard to air quality standards and any action being taken by the council to fulfil statutory obligations.

The Newton Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) was declared by West Lothian Council in 2016 for Particulate Matter (PM10) due to historical exceedances of the air quality objective. Automatic monitoring of these pollutants has been ongoing since 2011.

Annual Progress Reports submitted to the Scottish Government on air quality within West Lothian, have highlighted that concentrations of PM₁₀ are consistently below the air quality objective for both pollutants.

A Detailed Assessment of air quality in Newton  2022 Newton Detailed Assessment of Air Quality [1MB]  was independently carried out by air quality specialists in 2022 which concluded that WLC may wish to;

  1. Delay revoking the AQMA for PM10 until Scottish Government guidance regarding AQMA revocation and the use of FIDAs analysers (currently in use by WLC) for particulate measurements is updated.

The proposal to revoke the Newton Air Quality Management Area was presented to the Public and Community Safety PDSP on 27th February 2024 and subsequently submitted before Council Executive on 12th March 2024 to approve the proposals and seek agreement from the Scottish Government for revocation of the AQMA, to allow consultations on the Newton draft revocation report to begin.

The Scottish Government were content for the revocation of Newton AQMA to proceed for PM10 subject to any additional comments by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA). SEPA were content with the supporting air quality data taking into consideration point 1 of the conclusions (see above) in the Detailed Assessment and had no objections to the proposal.

West Lothian Council hereby notifies its intention to revoke the Newton Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) for PM10 in exercise of powers conferred upon it by Section 83(1) of the Environment Act 1995.

It is proposed that the AQMA is revoked in relation to continued compliance of the PM10 National Air Quality Strategy objectives as set out in the Air Quality (Scotland) Regulations 2000, the Air Quality (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2002 and the Air Quality (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2016.

The 2024 Proposed Newton Revocation Report can be viewed on the Councils website  Newton Revocation Report 2024 [578KB]

The Council invites written comments by 9th June 2024 on its proposal to revoke the Newton AQMA. Comments, should be sent as a reply to the following email address (, with Newton Air Quality Revocation Consultation  Report in the subject header. Consideration of comments will take place and the progress report may be updated, if necessary.



What have we done?

A Detailed Assessment of Air Quality in Newton was carried out and indicated that the two main sources of PM10 emissions in the Newton area are fuel combustion and road transport. It also found the following:

  • There were exceedances of the PM10 annual mean Scottish Objective in most of Newton;
  • Non road-traffic PM10 concentrations account for a significantly high proportion, up to 91.3% of total PM10 concentrations within the study area;
  • The contribution from road traffic to PM10 concentration is higher for the receptors closer to the road; and
  • When only comparing the contribution of road traffic and domestic fuel combustion, the largest contribution at each receptor comes from domestic fuel combustion. The contribution of domestic fuel combustion goes from 50.2% for receptors closest to the road up to 92.6% for receptors further away from the road, excluding the background contribution.

More information can be found in the  Detailed Assessment of Newton [910KB] .

In light of the Detailed Assessment of Air Quality in Newton using the available monitoring data from 2014, West Lothian Council was required to declare an Air Quality Management Area for the exceedances of the Scottish PM10 annual mean objective. A consultation on the proposed AQMA for Newton ran from the 16 May 2016 to 20 June 2016. The views gathered during this period were considered. An Air Quality Management Order was drafted and finalised in July 2016 declaring an Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) for Newton due to exceedances of fine particulates (PM10). More information can be found in the AQMA Order for Newton [276KB] .

The boundaries mirror those in the West Lothian Local Development Plan Proposed Plan.

Air Quality Management Area Map - Newton Displays a larger version of this image in a new browser window.

Where are we now?

The Draft Air Quality Action Plan (AQAP) [1MB] was drawn up and has been subject to public consultation. Section 5 of the draft AQAP details each measure and the service within West Lothian Council with responsibility for taking the measure forward. West Lothian Council is not seeking further views on the draft AQAP.

During the last 3 years air pollution levels have met air quality objectives (limits). Therefore a detailed assessment is being carried out to assess whether the Newton AQMA should remain in place. If the AQMA remains in place, the AQAP will then be finalised.

Air quality queries relating to Newton can be sent to or by post to West Lothian Council, Environmental Health, c/o West Lothian Civic Centre, Howden South Road, Livingston, West Lothian, EH54 6FF.