Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has laid out detailed proposals for delivering the Central London Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) in 2019, a year ahead of schedule. He has also set out plans for extending the ULEZ to the North and South Circular roads in 2019 or later and started the formal consultation necessary to introduce the ‘T charge’ for older polluting vehicles in October 2017. The proposals are part of the Mayor’s second air quality consultation led by TfL, which follows on from the initial round of consultation last summer. The consultation gives Londoners’ the opportunity to have their say on the preferred date for the start of an expanded ULEZ, out to the North and South Circular roads for cars, motorcycles and vans, and in central London for buses, coaches and lorries. Options include as early as 2019. Depending on feedback, the Mayor will ask TfL to develop these potential options into detailed statutory proposals for consultation next year. To further support the ULEZ, TfL is to ensure all double deckers operating in the Zone will be hybrid and all single decker buses will be fully electric or hydrogen.
The proposed Emissions Surcharge (T-charge) would apply to older polluting vehicles driving into the Congestion Charge zone from October 2017. This charge would be in addition to the Congestion Charge and would apply to vehicles that do not meet the Euro4 emissions standard for NOx and PM emissions. The charge, costing £10 per day for non-compliant vehicles, would operate at the same times as the Congestion Charge (Monday to Friday, 07.00 to 18.00). The Mayor has also called on Government to put in place a national diesel scrappage scheme to help people replace vehicles affected by the proposals. There was overwhelming support for this in the first round of his consultation. He also wants fiscal incentives, like vehicle excise duty, to be reformed so they support the Mayor’s proposals and encourage people to own and use the cleanest vehicles.
Commenting on the Mayor of London’s announcement, CPT’s Chief Executive, Simon Posner, said, ‘The proposals outlined in this consultation would, as we have known for some time, have far reaching effects on the coaching industry. A great deal of work has already taken place with the Mayor’s Office, TfL and politicians in the run up to the consultation and now that the full details of it are known, we will be putting forward a comprehensive and robust response. It is, however, vital that anything we say is backed up by independently verified evidence and CPT has therefore commissioned a wide ranging report from Steer Davies Gleave to cover this specific area.’
‘The report will look at: percentage of the total coach fleet which will be made up of Euro6 vehicles in 2019; likely cost to the industry in ULEZ charges over the next 15 years; possible cost to London tourism; and bill for total replacement with Euro6. This report will form a key part of the industry’s campaign going forward and will be published shortly.’
The Mayor’s consultation closes on 18 December 2016. For full details of the proposals and how to have their say, customers, stakeholders and residents can visit www.tfl.gov.uk/airquality-consultation or email email@example.com. A further final consultation will take place in early 2017, which will take into account the views from this consultation and propose statutory changes to the ULEZ.