London ULEZ to expand in 2021

The London Mayor’s Office has confirmed that the Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) is to be extended up to the the North and South Circular roads in 2021.

In a statement, the Mayor’s Office said: “The new ULEZ will cover an area 18 times larger than the Central London Ultra Low Emission Zone and will affect large numbers of polluting vehicles that don’t comply with strict emission standards. It is estimated that 100,000 cars, 35,000 vans and 3,000 lorries might be affected by the expanded zone and tighter standards every day.”

The statement added: “The expanded zone will be managed in the same way as the central London ULEZ, which is being delivered in April 2019, 17 months earlier than planned and will operate on top of the congestion charge, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.

“Drivers within the expanded zone using non-compliant vehicles will pay a daily ULEZ charge of £12.50, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. These include:

• motorbikes that do not meet Euro 3 standards

• petrol cars and vans that do not meet Euro 4 standards (roughly the equivalent to not being more than fifteen years old for cars in 2021)

• diesel cars and vans that do not meet Euro 6 standards (roughly the equivalent to not being more than six years old for cars in 2021)

“Across London diesel buses, coaches and lorries will need to meet the Euro 6 standard.”

The London Mayor commented: “An expanded Ultra-Low Emission Zone, in conjunction with the Central London ULEZ, will really help transform the air that millions of Londoners breathe.

“Some motorists will need help switching to greener transport options, which is why City Hall are urging Ministers to deliver a diesel scrappage scheme to get the dirtiest cars off our roads and offer drivers a fair deal, especially the many diesel drivers who brought vehicles thinking they were more environmentally friendly after Government advice.”

One of the key delivery companies operating in London has publicly supported the ULEZ plans. Hugo Martin, Hermes Director of Legal and Public Affairs, was quoted as saying: “Hermes is fully committed to meeting the standards in the expanded ULEZ and is investing in cleaner, electric vehicles to support this. We are pleased to be one of the leading lights in the logistics industry helping London on its path to a zero emissions future.”

ClientEarth  – the lobbying group which has taken authorities in both the UK and Germany to court in order to force the pace for air pollution regulations – see the ULEZ extension as a step forward. ClientEarth’s CEO James Thornton said : “This is a welcome announcement from the Mayor, who has shown he is prepared to take steps to protect Londoners’ health from the city’s toxic air. Political leaders across the UK should take note.

“A stronger, bigger Ultra Low Emission Zone brought in sooner would be key to tackling the illegal and harmful levels of air pollution found across the whole of Greater London. But, as his plans for expansion do not cover outer London, the mayor now needs to show exactly what he is going to do to ensure all Londoners can breathe cleaner air.”