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Controversial ‘pollution glue’ could be stuck to roads at Elephant & Castle

Plans to spray the roads around Elephant & Castle with controversial glue used to trap air pollution have taken a step forward with confirmation that the Mayor of London has backed a funding bid by Southwark Council and Lend Lease.

Earlier this year the Mayor came under fire from the Green Party for spending 1.43 million spraying a layer of glue on polluted main roads such as Marylebone Road and the A2 at New Cross.

A layer of calcium magnesium acetate (CMA) on the carriageway is intended to trap particulate matter to ensure that it does not re-circulate.

However, findings from the trial failed to support the use of the measure at hotspots where high levels of pollution were caused simply by heavy traffic.

Now the Mayor of London has agreed match funding from his air quality fund for a bid by Southwark Council and its Elephant & Castle development partner Lend Lease for a 790,000 package of measures including the use of dust suppressants on road surfaces near local construction sites.

Last month Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: "The trial provided evidence of a beneficial effect of the application of dust suppressants at some road locations and at industrial waste sites, however, the variable findings from the road corridor study sites do not support significant future application along road corridors in London as a measure to reduce PM10.

"For this reason, the future roll out of dust suppressants will focus on industrial sites and roads near construction sites and road works, where the greatest benefits can be achieved."

Other measures in the joint Southwark Council and Lend Lease bid for mayoral funding included construction and demolition vehicle driver awareness training and a logistics strategy, tree planting and greening initiatives, promotion and awareness of air quality issues as well as monitoring of the air quality at Elephant & Castle.

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