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London mayor Sadiq Khan outlines proposals for early ULEZ introduction

Private hire operators might have to bring forward plans to buy plug-in hybrids after London Mayor Sadiq Khan set out detailed proposals for the early introduction of the Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) and its expansion.

The central London ULEZ is currently scheduled to start in September 2020, but the mayor wants to bring the start date forward by 12 months to September 2019. The move follows an initial consultation last summer, in which 79% of Londoners said they supported such a plan.

Meanwhile, a new round of consultation will seek opinions on an expanded ULEZ stretching out as far as the North and South Circular. This could be brought in any time from 2019 to 2023.

The mayor has also proposed that the so-called T-Charge for older polluting vehicles entering the current Congestion Charge zone should be active from October 23, 2017. The T-charge would be in addition to the Congestion Charge, would operate during the same times and would levy a fee of £10 per day for vehicles that do not meet the Euro 4 emissions standard. Critics say the T-Charge will cut NOx emissions from cars by around 2%.

Depending on feedback the Mayor will ask TfL to develop these potential options into detailed statutory proposals for consultation next year.

Views are also sought on proposals to introduce an Emissions Surcharge. for NOx and PM emissions. The Mayor has also called on Government to put in place a national diesel scrappage scheme to help people replace vehicles affected by the proposals.

Alex Williams, TfL’s managing director of planning, said: “The Mayor has asked us to set out in detail and seek views on a range of proposals that will have a significant impact in reducing pollution in the capital. We think these ambitious proposals show London is taking the lead globally in tackling one of the biggest challenges of the 21st century.”

The consultation is open until 18 December for customers, stakeholders and residents. For more details, visit www.tfl.gov.uk/airquality-consultation.

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