The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has launched the second phase of the city’s air quality consultation, which includes proposals to introduce the planned Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) a year earlier than planned, in 2019.
The new proposals also include extending the ULEZ zone to the North and South circular roads (2019) and implementing the so-called T-charge — which is essentially a surcharge for old, heavily polluting vehicles (clunkers, as they’re known in the US) that enter the city — in late 2017.
While speaking at the launch event for the consultation, which was held at St Saviour’s and St Olave’s Church of England Secondary School in Southwark, South London, Sadiq Khan noted that the city’s air quality problems required “bold action.”
He also said: “I am determined to help every Londoner breathe cleaner air. After the massive response to my first consultation I now need the public to let me know their views on my detailed proposals to help clean up our filthy air.”
Business Green provides some context:
“The proposals form part of the mayor’s second air-quality consultation. The first, released this summer, attracted a record 15,000 responses from Londoners, with the majority firmly in support of the early introduction of the ULEZ and the £10 T-charge. … The new proposals provide more detail about the planned T-charge. If approved, the scheme would apply to older polluting cars entering the city’s congestion zone from October 2017. Those vehicles would be required to pay an extra £10 a day to enter central London, on top of the existing Congestion Charge.”
“The consultation also gives Londoners a chance to state their preferred start date for the expanded ULEZ. Depending on the consultation responses, the ULEZ could be expanded to encompass the North and South circulars in 2019, 2021 or later.”
As it stands, this second consultation is scheduled to end on December 18, 2016. Those who wish to have their voices heard will need to submit a response before then.
According to City Hall, if the ULEZ is introduced in 2019, it would deliver a 25% reduction in “toxic fumes” by as early as 2018 as a result of drivers working to comply early, with a 40% reduction occurring sometime in 2019.