The transport industry will have a greater responsibility to reduce pollution in London after Sadiq Khan announced the expansion of the Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) in 2021.
Covering an area that is 18 times the size of Central London’s ULEZ, the new zone is predicted to affect approximately 140,000 vehicles each day.
The new ULEZ will be expanded up to the north and south circular roads from 25 October 2021 and will follow in the footsteps of the Mayor’s plans to tighten standards for the heavy vehicles that emit the most pollution – such as buses, coaches and lorries – throughout the entirety of London from October 2020, which will use the existing ULEZ boundary.
Studies from the government – who published a Clean Air Strategy to combat pollution – reveal only heart disease, cancer and obesity are bigger risks to public health than pollution.
And the University of Oxford has revealed through research that the damage to public health caused by cars and vans each year costs approximately £6 billion each year to the NHS and society.
Through the new ULEZ, 100,000 cars, 35,000 and 3,000 lorries will be affected by the tighter standards and be expected to be cleaner vehicles in 2021.
This drive to improved emissions and greater air quality opens up a host of different markets, with solutions including hydrogen technology and fuel cells for vehicles something that would be of particular interest to stakeholders in the transport sector, if they are to operate greener, cleaner fleets.
And the Mayor of London said: “I promised hard-hitting measures to tackle our shameful air pollution and City Hall is confirming the next stage of our plans to expand the Ultra-Low Emission Zone up to the north and south circular roads.
“We’re doing everything in our power to tackle this issue and are starting to see improvements in air quality with the wide-ranging action we’ve taken already on tackling the most polluting cars, and cleaning up our bus and taxi fleet.
“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.”