London Mayor Sadiq Khan has this week announced his intentions to expand his city’s Ultra-Low Emission Zone standards to include London-wide buses, coaches, and lorries, as well as expanding the Zone to include North and South circular roads for all vehicles.
Mayor Khan’s plans to introduce an Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) have been in the works for months now, and early last month Khan announced that the ULEZ standards would be introduced from the 8th of April, 2019. London already has the T-Charge, a £10 Emissions Surcharge on the most-polluting vehicles, which will be replaced by the ULEV standards which will introduce two levels of charge — £12.50 a day for cars, vans and motorbikes and £100 a day for lorries, buses and coaches — obviously intended to make entering the city in polluting vehicles immediately unsustainable. These charges will drop on top of existing Congestion Charges, which would result in the more polluting cars and vans paying £24 per day and lorries paying £111.50 during Congestion Charge hours.
The ULEV will be introduced in Central London from April of 2019, but this week Mayor Khan proposed expanding the ULEV out to the North and South circular roads for all vehicles from the 25th of October, 2021. The Mayor launched a new public consultation earlier this week on the ULEZ standards seeking input on the expansion of the ULEZ to millions more Londoners, potentially expanding to include 100,000 cars a day, 35,000 vans a day, and 3,000 lorries a day. The benefits of the expanded ULEZ include:
- Approximately 100,000 people will no longer live in areas exceeding legal limits, which is a reduction of nearly 80% in 2021.
- 43% fewer road kilometers would exceed legal pollution limits in 2020 and 64% fewer in 2021
- 71% reduction in schools in high pollution areas in 2021 — reducing exposure of school children to harmful emissions that can reduce their lung development
- In outer London there would be a 28% reduction in NOx road transport emissions, and in inner London there would be around a 31% reduction in NOx road transport emissions in 2021.
“I am determined to take the bold action needed to protect the public from London’s poisonous, deadly air,” said Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan.
“I can’t ignore the shameful fact that London’s air is so toxic it harms children’s lungs, exacerbates chronic illness and contributes to thousands of premature deaths each year.
“Following the successful introduction of the T-Charge, and confirmation of the central London ULEZ, I am moving ahead with the next stage of my plan to expand the Ultra-Low Emission Zone up to the busy north and south circular roads.
“I want Londoners to let me know what they think about my plans to clean up our lethal air.”
“The Mayor has set out his vision for how harmful emissions will be dramatically reduced in the capital and we are working full speed to deliver his ambitious agenda,” added Alex Williams, TfL, Director of City Planning.
“The successful introduction of the T-Charge, the greening of the bus fleet and the bringing forward of the date for the central London ULEZ to April 2019 are all clear demonstrations of our intent to clean up London’s dangerously polluted air. The plan to expand the ULEZ up to the North and South circular is the next step change needed towards bringing the city’s air within legal limits. We look forward to Londoners helping us shape these proposals through the consultation.”