THE council has pledged to clear the air by committing to a cross-regional vehicle emissions scheme.

Stirling Council supported Clean Air Day by joining the Est Central Scotland Vehicle Emissions Partnership and by raising awareness of the damage caused by idling engines in the city.

The partnership also includes East Lothian, Falkirk, Midlothian and West Lothian councils and all are encouraging drivers to switch off engines when parked up and waiting.

Councillor Jim Thomson, convener of the Environment and Housing Committee, said: “By joining the vehicle emissions partnership we want to make people think about the importance of clean air and the impact that air pollution has on our health.

“By switching off their car engines, road users can help ensure a healthier environment and reduce air pollution across Stirling.

“It is less polluting to turn an engine off and restart it after a minute, than it is to leave it running.”

Cllr Danny Gibson, his vice convener, added: “We have demonstrated a clear commitment to increasing active travel and sustainable transport through investment in a variety of projects that will benefit people throughout Stirling.

“We were the first Council in Scotland to sign a Sustainable Development Agreement with SEPA last year and there are also simple things we can all do to improve air quality, as air pollution is causing serious harm to millions of people each year.

“By remembering to stop idling unnecessarily on Stirling’s roads or driveways, drivers can play their part in helping improve the local environment.”