Mayor Sadiq Khan today launched a public consultation to introduce a 10-pound-a-day toxicity levy on most polluting vehicles as part of his “bold action” to battle the toxic air in the British capital.
The levy – known as “T-charge” – is to be introduced in central London from October 23, 2017.
The Pakistani-origin mayor of London also unveiled a plan to create an ultra low emission zone (ULEZ) for polluting vehicles from 2019.
“Toxic air in London is a health emergency that requires bold action, including introducing charges for older polluting vehicles and expanding the ULEZ,” Khan said.
The central London ULEZ is currently scheduled to start in September 2020 but his City Hall office is now proposing that it be brought forward by a year.
Cars, vans and motorbikes not meeting set emission standards would have to pay 12.50 pounds a day to enter the zone, and lorries, coaches and buses 100 pounds, according to ‘Evening Standard’.
The standard for cars is Euro 6 for diesel and Euro 4 for petrol.
Motorists who drive more polluting vehicles could have to pay hundreds, possibly even thousands, of pounds in ULEZ and T-charge levies, or to upgrade to cleaner models.
Both schemes aim to significantly cut nitrogen dioxide and tiny particulate pollution, estimated to cause a death toll of up to 9,400 in London every year.
The mayor’s office believes if ULEZ was introduced in central London in 2019, there would be a 25 per cent reduction in nitrogen oxide in 2018 as people started to comply early, then a 40 per cent reduction in 2019 on top of what would have been achieved by ULEZ implementation in 2020.
Around 7,000 cars are expected to be impacted by the levy, 2,000 vans, 400 lorries, with 4,000 more vehicles receiving discounts or exemptions.