Following a consultation launched earlier this year, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has announced that the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) will be expanded to cover all boroughs in Greater London.
This decision will enable five million more Londoners to breathe cleaner air.
The ULEZ is currently in place in Central London, requiring motorists to pay a daily fee for driving more polluting vehicles that do not meet the emissions standards. According to government data, the ULEZ has already reduced roadside pollution levels by 44 percent in central London and 20 percent in inner London.
To enable all Londoners to reap these benefits, the expansion of this policy will come into effect on Tuesday 29 August 2023 and will operate across all London boroughs in the existing Low Emission Zone.
“The latest evidence shows that air pollution is making us sick from cradle to the grave. Londoners are developing life-changing illnesses, such as cancer, lung disease, dementia and asthma. And it’s especially dangerous for children due to the long-lasting impact on their health and life chances, with kids in our city growing up with stunted lungs.
“The ULEZ so far has been transformational, reducing harmful pollution levels by almost a half in central London. But there is still far too much toxic air pollution permanently damaging the health of young Londoners and leading to thousands of early deaths every year, with the greatest number of deaths in the outer London boroughs. Expanding the ULEZ London-wide will mean five million more people will be able to breathe cleaner air and live healthier lives.”
The ULEZ expansion will be accompanied by a new 110 million GBP scrappage scheme to support those on lower incomes, disabled Londoners, charities and small businesses.
Successful applicants will receive a grant to scrap or retrofit their vehicle. Car owners can also opt to receive a smaller grant with up to two free annual bus and tram passes, which would have a higher financial value.
In addition, the Mayor has extended the exemption periods for London’s disabled drivers and community transport minibuses to October 2027 and October 2025 respectively.
To maximise the potential benefits of expanding the ULEZ and strengthening alternatives to private cars, the Mayor has also revealed plans for improving the bus network in outer London alongside this announcement.
Expanding the Ultra Low Emission Zone was one of Sadiq Khan’s election campaign pledges.
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