Mayor targets vehicle pollution to tackle 'public health emergency'

 

A £10 emissions surcharge on the most polluting vehicles entering central London, from as early as next year, is the centrepiece of Sadiq Khan’s plan to tackle the ‘life and death’ issue of air quality in the capital.

The London mayor has launched a formal consultation on what City Hall called ‘plans for the toughest crackdown on the most polluting vehicles by any major city around the world’. All the key measures are transport-related.

”Local
Mr Khan said pollution is a life and death issue

Launching the plans at Great Ormond Street Hospital, Mr Khan, said: ‘With nearly 10,000 people dying early every year in London due to exposure to air pollution, cleaning up London’s toxic air is now an issue of life and death.

‘It is the 60th anniversary of the Clean Air Act of 1956, which was passed following the great London smogs of the 1950s. The legislation made a huge difference to life in London and saved countless lives. British politicians at the time did an amazing thing and responded on the scale that was required. Today we face another pollution public health emergency in London and now it’s our turn to act for the good of Londoners and for future generations to come.’

The mayor also called on the Government to work with him and take more action to tackle air pollution. He said: ‘We can’t do this alone in London.’

Key proposals include:

  • Implementing a £10 Emissions Surcharge (dubbed the ‘T-charge’) on the most polluting vehicles entering central London from 2017. The charge would apply to all vehicles with pre-Euro 4 emission standards (broadly speaking those registered before 2005) and will cost an extra £10 per day on top of the existing Congestion Charge.
  • Introducing the central London Ultra-Low Emission Zone one year earlier in 2019
  • Extending the Ultra-Low Emission Zone (‘ULEZ’) beyond central London from 2020: for motorcycles, cars and vans, to the North and South Circular; and for lorries, buses and coaches London-wide
  • Developing a detailed proposal for a national diesel scrappage scheme for Government to implement
  • Bringing forward the requirement for all double–deck buses to be ULEZ-compliant in central London from 2020 to 2019
  • Implementing clean bus corridors – tackling the worst pollution hotspots by delivering cleaner buses on the dirtiest routes

A first round of consultation will run until 29 July, followed by further more detailed consultation later this year. 

 

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