London becomes the first city in the world to implement a 24-hour, seven day a week Ultra Low Emission Zone, inside which vehicles will have to meet tough emissions standards or face a charge. Monday’s introduction of the zone, known as the ULEZ, aims to reduce toxic air pollution and protect public health. Vehicles are responsible for around half of harmful nitrogen oxide air emissions in the British capital, contributing to a toxic air health crisis that increases the risk of asthma, cancer, and dementia as well as causing thousands of premature deaths every year.
According to a Business report, under new rules introduced April 8, polluting vehicles will be discouraged from entering the ULEZ thanks to a daily charge of £12.50 for some cars, vans and motorbikes and £100 for trucks, buses, and coaches. Drivers can check whether their vehicle meets ULEZ emission standards using an online tool provided by travel authority Transport for London.
Since then, the number of vehicles entering the zone has fallen by around 11,000 per day, according to official figures, and there has been a 55 percent increase in emissions-compliant vehicles in the zone. London’s famous red bus fleet is also being updated as part of these efforts, and all 9,200 vehicles will meet or exceed ULEZ standards by October 2020, according to the mayor’s office.