London ULEZ rules tightened on PHEVs

As London’s Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) has been significantly expanded, rules have been changed so only completely zero-tailpipe emissions vehicles are exempted from the charge.

Until Monday 25th October, plug-in electric vehicles (PHEVs) emitting less than 75 grammes of CO2 per kilometre or less were exempted from the charge.

The new ULEZ is now 18 times bigger and stretches between the North Circular road and the South Circular road (but not including the roads in question). Transport for London (TfL) say that 35,000 vans, 3000 trucks and 100,000 cars will be affected by the changes every day.

Speaking at a Cross River Partnership webinar on the ULEZ expansion, Tanya Ferguson, senior policy and programmes officer for the Greater London Authority (GLA), said: “We’re ending the cleaner vehicle discount for plug-in hybrids in recognition of the point that vehicles (irrespective of emissions) contribute to congestion and we want to be encouraging a shift to walking, cycling and public transport.”

The exemptions for battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) will be scrapped on December 25, 2025 in an attempt to reduce heavy vehicle traffic on London’s roads, which zero emissions or not, contributes to congestion thanks to the volume of traffic on the roads.

Though the stricter conditions are being imposed at present, TfL is consulting on relaxing the ULEZ somewhat, including shortening the hours of operation both on weekdays and at the weekends to support economic recovery in the Capital. This would in turn ensure that the charges are only in place during the peak hours of traffic.

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