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The Mayor of London has launched the second phase of his consultation on proposed measures to improve air quality in the Capital.

The consultation phase, which runs until 18 December, invites the public to comment on detailed proposals for an Emission Surcharge payable by drivers whose vehicles do not meet stipulated conditions when driving in the Congestion Zone.  It also asks for feedback on the possible earlier introduction of an Ultra Low Emissions Zone and its possible enlargement to take in the whole area between the North and South Circular Roads.

A detailed summary of the ideas being consulted on is on the TfL website.  The introduction section is reproduced below.

New proposals to improve Air Quality - Have your say on the introduction of a new Emissions Surcharge and ideas for improving Ultra Low Emission Zone

Overview

air quality logoAir pollution is one of the most a significant challenges facing London. The equivalent of around 9,400 deaths per year in London are attributed to air quality related illnesses. Soon after his election in May this year, Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, called for new proposals to urgently tackle London’s current poor air quality.

The Mayor invited Londoners to share their experiences and ideas about improving air quality, and asked for their views on the measures he was proposing. Approximately 15,000 people responded to this consultation, and the majority of people were broadly supportive of the proposed measures. The results of the consultation are available to view by visiting http://talklondon.london.gov.uk/blogs/talk-london-team/results-clean-air-consultation.

We have now developed detailed proposals for the implementation of the Emissions Surcharge (ES), and ideas for improving the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ).

The first of these proposals is to introduce the ES (more commonly known as the ‘T-Charge’) in 2017, for the older, more polluting vehicles driving into and within central London. This would be in addition to the Congestion Charge.

This consultation contains detailed statutory proposals for the ES. The introduction of the ES will involve changes to the current Congestion Charge Scheme order, subject to this consultation. The Mayor will consider representations received and decide whether or not to approve them (with or without modifications) in early 2017.

We are also seeking your views on the following ideas:

  • Bringing forward the introduction of the ULEZ to 2019, instead of 2020
  • Extending the ULEZ from Central London to Londonwide for heavy vehicles (heavy goods vehicles (HGVs), buses and coaches), as early as 2019, but possibly later; and
  • Extending the ULEZ from Central London up to the North and South Circular roads for all vehicles[1], as early as 2019, but possibly later.

There is also a 100-page consultation and information document.

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Karl Brown's Avatar
Karl Brown posted a reply #2605 15 Jan 2017 12:04
Fascinating press examples of the polarised positioning we are experiencing more frequently (eg Brexit, people on cycles et al): In the Telegraph, ex Chancellor Lawson writes, “Over the past century and a half of industrialisation, it’s officially estimated average global temperature has risen by 1 degree centigrade... But this is trivial: there are plenty of countries thriving with a temperature well above the global average”. So that’s OK then.

Then the President of MIT – one of the world’s foremost research institutions – speaking at Imperial College London – also one of the world’s foremost research institutions - highlighted “it’s very clear to me what the facts are……if we keep polluting the air we’re going to destroy the planet – and eventually destroy us”. “This is not an issue of faith or something you believe or not. This is factual”. He indicated that current models give a roughly 25 year future for some global cities (including London) to fight pollution before seeing “irreversible environmental damage” or as he summarises, “messing things up royally”. So that’s not OK then.

OK or possibly really not at all going to be OK; how confusing.
Chrystalla Georgiou's Avatar
Chrystalla Georgiou posted a reply #2606 15 Jan 2017 17:38
I chose only to believe the expects in that Pollution is deadly.

Ultra Low Emissions is just not good enough in a city that is growing in population. Zero Emission Vehicles is the only solution, but of course this is far too expensive to implement. Is Health and our Plant not worthy of the cost?

All London public buses should at least be Zero Emission.
Karl Brown's Avatar
Karl Brown posted a reply #2609 16 Jan 2017 16:41
Well on air pollution at least it seems good news, for finally the Government has apparently twigged that we are facing a major health issue.

Tricia Hayes, the director general for roads, motoring and devolution ie a senior Department for Transport (DfT) official , has admitted that it took government a long time to realise the importance of air quality as a public health issue but it is now a ‘top priority’.

She is reported last week as saying: It’s affecting the way we are thinking about infrastructure, design and delivery already but I think it’s going to get even more so, when we have that formal plan in place. (The formal plan being that forced on HMG by a ruling of the Supreme Court and which needs to be available in draft form by 24 April this year.). No mention there of people on cycles (yet).

‘As a public health issue the numbers for air quality are more dramatic now than the numbers for road safety. More people are dying as a consequence of air quality in the transport system than are dying as a consequence of road safety. It took us a long time to really clock that.’

Why it took a long time and two Supreme Court rulings to “clock” that 40,000 (the estimated annual air quality related deaths) is (much) bigger than 1,800 (latest DoT estimated annual road traffic deaths) wasn’t mentioned.
Paul Mandel's Avatar
Paul Mandel posted a reply #2611 16 Jan 2017 22:09
The government's doing the right thing, engineering out bottlenecks on roads it controls. Shame the GLA via TFL didn't do the same thing for the A 406 when it had a chance. Instead, TFL , Enfield Council and the Notting Hill Housing Trust between them have scuppered any chance of that happening, for all intents and purposes, permanently.