posted 1 month ago

New London Emission Surcharge For Most Polluting Vehicles

Proposed Emission Surcharge launch date, cost, penalised vehicles and the parts of the city it relates to.

Purpose of Emission Surcharge

A £10 Emission Surcharge that penalises motorists for driving older, more polluting, vehicles should come into force in October 2017, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan argued. If his proposal passes a consultation phase, its purpose will be to improve air quality by encouraging drivers to choose more environmentally friendly models.

Mr Khan claimed: "Toxic air in London is a health emergency that requires bold action. I am determined to help every Londoner breathe cleaner air. Transport for London argued that traffic pollution causes a range of conditions such as: cardiovascular disease, respiratory disease plus bronchitis in asthmatic children.

Eligible vehicles

The Surcharge will relate to petrol and diesel vehicles that fail to hit Euro 4 NOx (nitrogen oxides) and PM (particulate matter) emission standards. That is, typically, those registered prior to 2005. L Category vehicles such as 3-wheelers and quadricycles will fall foul if they cannot hit the less stringent, Euro 3, standards. 

The L Category looks set for softer treatment as vehicles are “less advanced” than many other types, Transport for London said. New examples must only meet Euro 4 standards from 2017 whereas cars already hit Euro 6. As with the Congestion Charge, it is proposed that all 2-wheeled motorcycles, mopeds and scooters will be exempt. 

Where and when

The Surcharge will operate within the same area and times as the Congestion Charge. This includes: Finsbury (towards the north), Lambeth (south), Mayfair (west) and Fenchurch Street Railway Station (east). Hours are Monday to Friday 7am to 6pm excluding Bank/Public Holidays and the period between Christmas and New Year.

On this basis, some motorists will pay the £11.50 Congestion Charge - reduced to £10.50 if paid via auto pay rather than manually – plus the £10 Emission Surcharge. The total will, therefore, be £21.50 or £20.50 per-day. However, those that live in the Congestion Charge/Emission Surcharge zones will get a 90% discount. 

Further proposals to improve air quality

The Mayor has further proposals. Many relate to the Ultra Low Emission Zone that will – from launch – require motorists to pay to enter in vehicles that fail to satisfy emission standards. As of now, it will apply to the Congestion Charge zone and launch in 2020, but unlike the Congestion Charge/Emission Surcharge run 24/7. 

Proposals include:

  • bring forward the launch of the Ultra Low Emission Zone to 2019;
  • extend the Zone from Central London to London-wide for heavy goods vehicles, buses and coaches;
  • extend the Zone from Central London to the North and South Circular Roads for all vehicles.