A “compete shift” from car use is needed to tackle pollution and improve city centre for people the councillor who chairs the council environment committee has said.

Angus Millar told a fringe meeting at the SNP conference in Aberdeen that cars have been protected and priorities in Glasgow for too long and change is needed.

Mr Millar spoke at meeting hosted by the British Lung Foundation on air quality he said there is an inequality in the impact of pollution.

Mr Millar said Glasgow has one of the lowest car ownerships in Scotland but the most space given over to cars.

He said: “It is those who contribute the least to emissions that are suffering the most.”

Mr Millar raised the decision taken decades ago to built a motorway through the city.

He added: “The M8 runs through my ward. We are having to deal with the legacy of that.”

The councillor said “We have a real opportunity to take action. We need to be bold and ambitious on emissions and air quality.

We need to realise that we are going to need to have a complete shift away from cars.

“It is about rebalancing our city towards people rather than vehicles.”

Glasgow has introduced the first phase of a Low Emission Zone in the city centre for buses. There are plans to extend the Avenues project, recently completed in Sauchiehall Street to reduce the road space for vehicles and a plan to change George Square could involve car free streets.

Transport Secretary, Michael Matheson, echoed the comments about reducing car use.

He said: “In the transport policy there is a hierarchy of transport options. The first option for short trips should be walking, cycling or public transport.

The next phase is the Transport Review. The direction of travel for government is reduce car use in city centres and overall.”

Joseph Carter of British Lung Foundation called for a government focus on improving air quality.

He said children are most at risk form pollution from vehicles.

Mr Carter said because they are smaller they are closer to the source of the pollution from exhaust fumes and because their lungs are not fully developed they are more likely to be affected by respiratory problems from breathing in poor air quality.