Cllr Burbridge polluting M/C report

Nathen Brooke made this Freedom of Information request to Westminster City Council

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was successful.

Dear Sir or Madam,

On the 31st of March 2009 Cllr. Susan 'Susie' Burbridge attended the Built Environment, Policy and Scrutiny Committee Meeting where she waved a piece of paper around claiming that is was a report based on scientific research in Paris which found that a small motorcycle was more polluting than a Hummer. Despite repeated request for Burbridge to proved a copy of this report she has failed to even acknowledge these requests.

Hence this FOI request for you to please provide a copy of the French report referred to by Cllr Burbridge on the 31st of March 2009 at the Built Environment, Policy and Scrutiny Committee Meeting.

Yours faithfully,

Tim Pope

FOI, Westminster City Council

Dear Mr Brooke,

We have received a similar request and following an investigation with
all relevant parties reported that the information was not held by the
Council as defined under the Act. This means that the Council does not
hold such a document nor any reference to it. We are sorry that we have
been unable to meet your requirements.

Many Thanks
Corporate FOI Team

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Mike Buckley left an annotation ()

Long story short: Motorcycles, even small ones, are more polluting than Hummers, but it's the best that can be done for now. If you want to make a difference, consider an electric two-wheeler for your next bike or a gas-powered model with fuel injection and a 3-way catalytic converter.

Nathen Brooke left an annotation ()

Mike Buckley, my FOI request specifically refers to the report Burbridge held up at the meeting which she claimed was French, and based in Paris. I am not interested in a now widely discredited news article which appeared in America. In the UK we are governed by UK and EU law, so lets hope Burbridge can produce this FRENCH report soon.

Mr Sawyer left an annotation ()


EU regulations are much tougher that our American cousins and additionally, it's not really fair to compare an old two stroke motorcycle with a slab sided carburetor with modern efficient EFI controlled petrol injection motorcycles. Modern motorcycles of four and two stroke burn fuel much more efficiently and hence produce low levels of NOx.

Don't believe the hype, read the facts.

Bob Stammers left an annotation ()

I had the same response to FOI and have also been ignored by Cllr Burbridge.

Perhaps the next step is to report her to the Standards Board for England as she is clearly not able to substantiate her claim.

Bob Stammers left an annotation ()

Official response from the council's scrutiny officer:

I have discussed the matter with Councillor Burbridge and she has advised me that she does not recall the title of the document in question or the website address from which she obtained it. She has informed me that she found the information upon undertaking a ‘google’ search on motorcycles and pollution.   

I regret that there is no information that she can usefully give you and that the Council does not hold the information.

spannermonkey left an annotation ()

Oh, she seems to have not only have forgotten which website she got the report from, but also lost the bit of paper that she printed it on. Isn,t lucky for her that Westminster has an IT support unit that will be able to search her PC's history to find it. Or if she deleted her history, it's core memory. Gee's I'm so glad that she hasn't lost it, that would be a real shame and leave her open to allegations of being a liar.

Big Dave left an annotation ()

I would imagine that WCC audits everyones internet activities therefore you can review her web traffic and find the source.

The report was sighted by the councillor in an official meeting as source, she even went so far as to say that these were not her words but those of the report to sway opinion. As such the report needs to be provided or disaplinary hearings need to be started for misleading the scrutiny meeting as well as a fresh meeting with only true information being submitted.