Consultation launched to expand ULEZ to all of Greater London

Drivers of vehicles that do not meet the strict emissions standards can receive a daily allowance of £12.50 to drive anywhere in Greater London.

That’s because London Mayor Sadiq Khan has held a consultation on plans to extend the ultra-low-emission zone (ULEZ) to the entire capital.

Mr Khan says it can take more than 100,000 older, more polluting cars off the road as he tries to reduce toxic air pollution and congestion.

He proposes extending the boundary of the plan from the North and South Circular Roads to all of Greater London from August 29 next year.

The current ULEZ boundary, through but not including the North and South ring road. Credit: Transport to London

Speaking to the PA news agency at City Hall, Mr Khan said: “I’m in a war on toxic air. This is a war on climate change, this is a war on congestion to ensure that in London everyone can breathe clean air .

“We’ve seen the benefits of the world’s first ultra-low-emission zone in central London, and in London, we’ve reduced toxic air by almost half.”

Whether a vehicle is subject to a ULEZ charge depends on the amount of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) it emits. To avoid the tax, diesel cars generally need to be registered after September 2015, while most petrol models registered from 2005 onwards are exempt.

In suburbs of London, more than four out of five vehicles already meet ULEZ standards, says TfL

City hall said all Londoners live in areas that violate the World Health Organization’s target for particulate matter and nitrogen dioxide, 500,000 who suffer from asthma and a similar number will develop diseases related to dirty air over the next 30 years.

Watford Observer: London Mayor Sadiq Khan.  Credit: PAThe Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan. Credit: PA

Oliver Lord, of the Clean Cities campaign, said: “A London-wide ULEZ will ensure that everyone breathes cleaner air and especially people who live on busy roads, who are often left behind.

“However, we were far too late to have a conversation about what comes next, and I’m glad this has started because we need to do more than ULEZ to meet our climate goals.”

Some politicians have criticized the Labor mayor’s consultation plans.

Conservative Transport Minister Andrew Stephenson said in the House of Commons on Thursday that Mr Khan should not punish “people who have to use their cars, especially at a time when people are struggling with the cost of living”.

On Friday morning, Sadiq Khan insisted he would not go ahead with the plans if the public overwhelmingly rejected them during the public consultation.

In addition to the environmental benefits, the expansion of the ULEZ would lead to further revenues for Transport for London. TfL’s finances are under pressure due to the pandemic.

However, the BBC reported that the expansion of the ULEZ to the northern and southern circular roads brought in less revenue than expected in the first month.

Mr Khan previously ruled out the introduction of a Clean Air Charge, which would have affected drivers of all but the cleanest vehicles.

He also decided not to go ahead with a proposal to make drivers of vehicles registered outside London pay for entering the capital.

The ULEZ extension consultation ends on July 29. To participate, visit https://haveyoursay.tfl.gov.uk/cleanair?cid=clean-air

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