In the last few days, a judge has ruled that the expanded ULEZ zone has been approved to go ahead later this month. London mayor Sadiq Khan has been planning an expansion of the zone for a while now and the aim is to help reduce emissions and improve air quality within the capital. The new zone will go ahead on the 29th August and broadly applies to anything inside of the M25 motorway.
With ULEZ in its current form, any vehicle that isn’t compliant will be subjected to a daily £12.50 fee. This broadly applies to any petrol vehicle that doesn’t meet the Euro 4 emissions standards or a diesel car which doesn’t Meer the Euro 6 standards. Euro 4 for petrol means any car that has been registered from 1 January 2006. The threshold for diesel is a little stricter, with any cars registered from September 2014 onwards.
Like any widespread changes, the proposal has been met with criticism. Many arguments against the expansion are that people cannot afford to change their car to a complaint one, especially as the cost of living has been rising. However, Khan has said that this is “good news, as it means we can proceed with cleaning up the air in outer London.”
A new scrappage scheme is to be introduced, with £2,000 being given for people who change to a complaint car. However, many have said this only goes so far, with it “unlikely to be enough to enable the purchase of a car which meets the current criteria.”
The UK government has a target of 2030, which is when the sale of new cars that are powered by combustion engines only will be banned. However, it isn’t until 2035 which is when people can no longer purchase hybrid vehicles. It is a common misconception that this ban means that people can no longer drive combustion cars. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. People can of course carry on driving ICE cars, it is just that new car sales will be zero emission only from 2035.