The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has accelerated the city’s plans to introduce an Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ). The ULEZ, which will charge many cars and vans a £12.50 fee to enter the city, will now be rolled out in April 2019, instead of in September 2020 (as planned by former mayor Boris Johnson).
Commenting on the change of plans, Khan was quoted as saying: “The air in London is lethal and I will not stand by and do nothing.”
Notably, the London Mayor is also now planning to launch a consultation to explore the expansion of the Ultra Low Emission Zone to all of London for buses, coaches, and trucks (from 2020), and to part of London — “from London city airport in the east to Tottenham’s White Hart Lane football stadium in the north, Kew Gardens in the west and Clapham Common in the south” — for cars and vans (from 2021).
Reuters provides more: “The asthma-sufferer, who was elected less than a year ago, has promised to make London one of the greenest cities in the world with more electric buses and charging points for cars… ULEZ will apply to all petrol vehicles which do not meet Euro 4 emissions standards and all diesel models which do not comply with Euro 6 standards.”
Similar actions are being taken in a number of other major cities around the world, with selective diesel car bans and periodic car bans being the most common — primarily in response to growing air pollution problems and a growing awareness of the health impacts of such pollution.
As a reminder, London is also going to begin implementing a £10 “T-Charge” in October, which will tax the entrance of old (heavily polluting) vehicles into Central London.
— Mayor of London (gov.uk/coronavirus) (@MayorofLondon) April 4, 2017
If you follow that link, here’s a sharp line you can find there: “Drivers will be paying £21.50 total during peak congestion, so the message here is clear — polluting vehicles aren’t welcome.”
Of course, there are also strong reasons for it: “Every year, over 9,000 Londoners are dying prematurely from long-term exposure to air pollution and our latest research shows that hundreds of schools are located in areas exceeding safe legal pollution levels.
“Mayor Sadiq Khan is implementing tough measures to reduce London’s deadly air pollution and protect the health and wellbeing of all Londoners.”
If only all major cities implemented such sensible policies.