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UK News As Birmingham plans to stop vehicles driving through the city, we reveal the areas set to ban cars or have a low emission zone within three years

14:45  14 january  2020
14:45  14 january  2020 Source:   thisismoney.co.uk

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An increasing number of towns and cities across Britain plan to introduce restrictions and bans on vehicles in a bid to reduce pollution levels.

Birmingham City Council is the latest to publish its draft transport plan, which is highlighted by a proposal to ban car users from making 'through trips' to get from one side of city to the other and a 20mph limit on all residential roads.

The proposal released this week aims to make Birmingham carbon neutral by 2030 by revamping the ring road around it to reduce emissions in the most populated parts of the city.

But it's not the only area looking to accelerate a restriction on cars.

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a large city landscape: No through route: Birmingham City Council announced plans this week to stop motorists from driving through the city to get to the other side © Provided by This Is Money No through route: Birmingham City Council announced plans this week to stop motorists from driving through the city to get to the other side

Both Oxford and York have also confirmed in the last week similar intentions to introduce low emission zones for vehicles, too.

Here's a run down of all the UK locations either with driving charges or car bans in place - or plans to implement them in the near future...

Birmingham's 'through driving' ban is an addition to a Clean Air Zone (CAZ) arriving in July

The most controversial element of Birmingham's project is about 'transforming the city centre' and a ban on vehicles from driving through it.

It intends to borrow an initiative already in use in Ghent in Belgium, which forces motorists planning to cross the city to exit their area via the ring road and travel to their desired location - potentially on the other side of the Midlands city - using this route.

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Only motorists whose destination is in the city itself will be allowed to drive in, but will forced to pay a charge if their car is not compliant with vehicle emission standards as part rules being introduced in a few months.

As well as stopping motorists cutting through the city, the Transport Plan released on Monday also included a workplace parking levy and the extension of the city's controlled parking zones - which remove all free parking from the centre.

In its place will be an increased park and ride service for access in and out of the centre.

The third part of the proposals is for all residential areas to have 20mph speed limits, despite studies showing that this has little impact on safety and emission.

an aerial view of a city: Birmingham City Council has been given a 'final warning' to improve the quality of its air and plans to introduce a clean-air zone © Provided by This Is Money Birmingham City Council has been given a 'final warning' to improve the quality of its air and plans to introduce a clean-air zone a car parked on the side of the street: Birmingham City Council wants all residential streets within the city centre to have 20mph zones, despite research showing it has no impact of safety, traffic flow or emission levels © Provided by This Is Money Birmingham City Council wants all residential streets within the city centre to have 20mph zones, despite research showing it has no impact of safety, traffic flow or emission levels

Research for Transport for London last year found that 20mph limits have little impact on journey times during the day, 'slightly increase' travel periods at night and have no impact on pollution.

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Manchester City Council was also previously forced to scrap a 20mph scheme that cost taxpayers £1.7million after it found that the reduced limit made no difference.

It was abandoned in 2017 - five years after it launched - when figures revealed average driving speeds in some trial areas had actually gone up.

The new plans are an extension of a Clean Air Zone that will be introduced in the city from 1 July 2020, which charge all drivers of pre-Euro 4 petrol and pre-Euro 6 diesel cars to drive within the limits of the A4540 Middleway Ring Road.

It will operate 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and all revenue raised by the charge zone is promised to be reinvested in Birmingham's transport network.

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Knowing your car's Euro emissions rating is more important than ever, given the increasing number of levies and fines being introduced for older cars, especially diesels.

Most Clean Air, Low Emission and Ultra Low Emission Zones being - or already - implemented impact pre-Euro 4 emissions petrol and pre-Euro 6 emission diesels.

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It's worth checking online to see which category your car falls into, though it will roughly be designated by when it was first registered:

Euro 1 - from 31 December 1992

Euro 2 - from 1 January 1997

Euro 3 - from 1 January 2001

Euro 4 - from 1 January 2006

Euro 5 - from 1 January 2011

Euro 6 - from 1 September 2015

Where else in the UK will there be vehicle clean air zones, driving charges and vehicle bans?

Aberdeen

Low Emission Zone and ban on some vehicles in 2020

The Scottish city of Aberdeen intends to have a Low Emission Zone operating from late 2020, though has yet to publish the finer details of how the system will operate.

The LEZ is likely to be in the city centre as this is currently where air quality is poorest and implement a ban on vehicles that fail to meet the required emission standards.

This is likely to be Euro 6 for diesel cars and Euro 4 for petrols. The restriction will also impact diesel-powered Euro VI HGVs and buses.

A review of air quality in the city is due to be published soon, which will then determine the LEZ options and scenarios.

Bath

Clean Air Zone for commercial vehicles in 2020

Bath had been at the forefront of introducing a charge from private vehicles, though last year performed a huge U-turn after facing a backlash from motorists in the city.

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Under the proposals for the original Clean Air Zone, drivers of pre-Euro 6 diesel and pre-Euro 4 petrol cars and vans would have been charged £9 to enter the centre of Bath from late 2020.

However, a public consultation in December garnered 8400 responses from local residents who opposed the zone.

As a result, the charge will only be for taxis, buses, coaches, lorries and vans that don't meet the emission requirements.

a close up of a map: Bristol will become the first UK city next year to ban the use of all diesel cars from roads © Provided by This Is Money Bristol will become the first UK city next year to ban the use of all diesel cars from roads

Bristol

Ban on all diesel cars and Clean Air Zone for commercial vehicles in 2021

Bristol is the first UK city set to launch a city ban on diesel passenger vehicles in March 2021, awaiting government approval to restrict the use of can and vans from certain roads between 7am and 3pm.

The ban is due to come into effect from March 2021 and will run alongside a wider Clean Air Zone congestion charge that will incur a daily levy on commercial vehicles only.

The daily central ban zone for diesel covers part of the M32, the old city, Redcliffe, Spike Island, the Harbourside and part of Hotwells during the eight-hour peak times.

All diesel-powered vehicles - with the exception of taxis and emergency services - will incur fines if they stray into the area during the enforcement period.

To help owners of diesel cars replace their vehicles, the council has promised to roll out a scrappage scheme.

This is likely to offer up to £2,000 for their oil-burning vehicle and could be extended to residents in Bath & North East Somerset, North Somerset, South Gloucestershire as well as Bristol.

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Cambridge

Clean Air Zone for vehicles (date TBC)

Cambridge City Council has acknowledged that it has an air quality issue - partly blaming the popularity of the A14 nearby - and a clean air zone for vehicles is likely to be implemented to help clean up what locals breathe.

It ran a feasibility study last year to investigate whether introducing one or more clean air zones in Cambridge would help reduce air pollution.

It also discussed plans with businesses and residents but has yet to produce a formal action plan for a zone.

Cardiff

Clear Air Zone for vehicles (date TBC)

In August 2019 the Welsh government asked Cardiff City Council to reconsider the introduction of a Clear Air Zone for vehicle, despite the authority previously ruling out a charge for drivers.

Earlier that year the council said it would not implement a Clean Air Zone in the city and instead submitted plans to reduce harmful nitrogen oxides with active transport initiatives, taxi mitigation measures and retrofitting buses with Adblue systems to make then cleaner.

However, the Welsh government continues to pile on pressure for the authority to 'better assess the potential' of a CAZ to cut emissions.

Derby

Traffic management measures or a Clean Air Zone (date TBC)

Derby City Council has proposed to introduce traffic management measures to manage the flow of traffic in and around the centre that will help to reduce emissions.

However, reports have emerged that the government will encourage the implementation of a clean air zone as the authority's preferred measures won't have enough of an impact.

The city council has two options in place. The first is a clean air zone within the boundaries of the city's inner ring road that would charge pre-Euro 4 petrol and pre-Euro 6 diesel cars and vans as well as HGVs, buses and coaches.

The second scheme would cover an even wider part of the Derby to the outer ring road, though the authority has already raised concerns that this could be too extreme.

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Dundee

Low Emission Zone and ban on some vehicles in 2020

Under proposals, the city's inner ring road would form the boundary for a Low Emission Zone.

Petrol cars registered before 2006 (pre Euro 4) and diesel cars registered before 31 August 2015 (pre Euro 6), as well as older HGVs and LGVs, would be banned from the zone.

Sound familiar? That's because Dundee is one of the four major cities tasked with have an LEZ in place as part of the Scottish Government's air pollution targets.

a large building: Edinburgh has a two-tier operation for a Low Emission Zone that doesn't impact private car owners until 2024 © Provided by This Is Money Edinburgh has a two-tier operation for a Low Emission Zone that doesn't impact private car owners until 2024

Edinburgh

Two-tier Low Emission Zone and a ban for some vehicles in 2020

Similar to the other Scottish cities listed here, Edinburgh City Council has already published a draft proposal for a Low Emission Zone for introduction by the end of this year.

However, the authority wants to take a two-tier approach, giving drivers until 2024 to buy compliant model.

All cars, buses and lorries that fail to meet pollution standards (Euro6 for diesel and Euro4 for petrol) will be banned from the city centre itself.

But a separate zone for the wider city will see cars exempt from the rules for four to five years years to give locals time to replace their vehicles with greener ones.

Buses, coaches and commercial vehicles will also have until 2023 before they are charged for driving older machinery in the wider zone.

Glasgow

Low Emission Zone already in place that is extended to cars in 2022

Glasgow's Low Emission Zone has been in force since 31 December 2018, but it only applies to local buses for the meantime.

Private car drivers won't escape, though. On 31 December 2022, all vehicles entering the city centre zone will be required to meet the relevant standards, which are in-line with all other zones, demanding that all petrol cars are at least Euro 4, all diesels are Euro 6 and restrictions for heavy vehicles with diesel engines.

Like elsewhere, Automatic Number Plate Recognition cameras monitoring the city will identify any non-compliant vehicles being used in the zone so fines can be administered to owners.

Leeds

Clean Air Zone for HGVs, buses, coaches and taxis in July 2020

Leeds was due to introduce its Clean Air Zone earlier this month but the council recently confirmed that it has been pushed back to at least July 2020.

The scheme will aim to tackle air pollution by charging high-emission HGVs and buses £50 a day to drive in the city.

High-emission taxis and private hire vehicles would also need to pay, though the daily charge is reduced to £12.50.

The zone itself covers most of the city, but private cars - for the time being - are not going to be affected.

a sign on a busy city street: The London ULEZ has been in place since April 2019 and has already reduced air pollution levels significantly in the centre of the capital © Provided by This Is Money The London ULEZ has been in place since April 2019 and has already reduced air pollution levels significantly in the centre of the capital a close up of a map: The ULEZ is due to be expanded to the North and South Circular Road next year, which will hit hundreds of thousands of motorists living in the capital © Provided by This Is Money The ULEZ is due to be expanded to the North and South Circular Road next year, which will hit hundreds of thousands of motorists living in the capital

London

Ultra Low Emission Zone already in place and due to be expanded in 2021

London's Ultra-Low Emission Zone is the first Clean Air Zone of its kind, introduced by mayor Sadiq Khan in April 2019.

ULEZ is currently in place in the same part of central London as the Congestion Charge Zone and is in force 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Pre-Euro 6 diesel cars, pre-Euro 4 petrols and pre-Euro 3 motorcycles are affected, having to pay £11.50 to enter the ULEZ - and that's on top of the £12.50 daily Congestion Charge.

Classic cars built before 1979 are exempt from the daily fee. Non-Euro VI HGVs, buses and coaches are charged £100 a day.

In the first few months, the number of older vehicles being used in the zone fell by 35 per cent. While this significantly reduce emissions, fewer CCZ and ULEZ payments are estimated to cost London £26million in revenues in the first year.

Under current plans, the ULEZ will be expanded on 26 October 2021 to cover all of the city inside the North and South Circular Roads, impacting hundreds of thousands of residents.

A £25million Scrappage Scheme7605553 has been launched to help low-income families replace their older cars with ULEZ-compliant models, though only offers £2,000 to owners if they scrap their out-of-date motors.

Manchester

Clean Air Zone for HGVs, buses, coaches, taxis and vans in 2021

Manchester's planned Clean Air Zone is due to hit the city from 2021, but currently has no intention of affecting private cars.

Instead buses, coaches and HGVs will face a £100 daily charge while taxi operators with non-compliant vehicles have to stump up £7.50 a day.

Non-compliant vans from 2023 will also be charged the lower rate, under existing proposals.

The scheme would be in operation 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

What is still being discussed is the precise boundary for the zone. The council says it is likely to cover the whole of Greater Manchester, though not inclusive of routes that are part of the Strategic Road Network managed by Highways England.

a close up of a map: Newcastle has outlined plans for a Clean Air Zone in the city centre, but it won't target private vehicle for the time being © Provided by This Is Money Newcastle has outlined plans for a Clean Air Zone in the city centre, but it won't target private vehicle for the time being

Newcastle

Clean Air Zone for HGVs, buses, coaches, taxis and vans in 2021

Like Manchester, the Newcastle Clean Air Zone won't initially hit private cars.

Instead, diesel HGVs, buses and coaches that don't meet emissions standards will have to pay £50 a day to enter the city.

Only Euro 4 and later petrol taxis and vans will be exempt from a reduced £12.50 fee, under the current rules.

The zone will only impact the city centre, though Newcastle City Council also wants to introduce measures to cut traffic on the Tyne Bridge to one lane in each direction in a bid to deter motorists from using it.

a view of a city: Oxford councils have agreed on a vehicle 'Red Zone' from December 2020 that will charge motorists of all cars (except electric models) £10 to use give busy streets between 7am and 7pm. Residents, businesses and Blue Badge holders will all receive discounts on the charge © Provided by This Is Money Oxford councils have agreed on a vehicle 'Red Zone' from December 2020 that will charge motorists of all cars (except electric models) £10 to use give busy streets between 7am and 7pm. Residents, businesses and Blue Badge holders will all receive discounts on the charge

Oxford

Red  Zone charge for vehicles in 2020

Oxford City Council and Oxfordshire County Council have agreed a plan for a 'red zone' in five streets in Oxford city centre from 1 December 2020, charging drivers £10 to use them between the hours of 7am and 7pm.

Only pure electric vehicles producing zero tailpipe emissions will be exempt from the charge.

Discounts will be available to blue badge holders and businesses registered at addressed in the red zone for the first four years.

Residents in the zone will also get a 90 per cent discount on the daily charge for the first 10 years, until December 2030.

Adding to this will be a 'green zone' implemented across the rest of Oxford city centre between 2021 and 2022, charging drivers of older cars to use them.

The restriction will match those of the London ULEZ, impacting owners of vehicles that don't meet Euro 4 emission standards for petrol and the latest Euro 6 measures for diesel.

Portsmouth

Clean Air Zone for HGVs, buses, coaches and taxis in 2021

A proposed Clean Air Zone for Portsmouth, which has no intention of targeting drivers of private cars, has recently been scaled back by the city council so it impacts a smaller area.

The proposed zone was due to cover all the Portsea Island area, but has since been reduced to just the western side of the city, excluding the council-owned Portsmouth International Port.

Buses and lorries not meeting emission standards would be charged £50 per day, while taxi drivers using pre-Euro 4 petrol or pre-Euro 6 diesel motors would have to pay £10 per day.

There are also plans for a Clean Air Zone in neighbouring Fareham, impacting the A27 and A32.

Reading

Potential Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone (date TBC)

Reading Borough Council is currently considering exploring the introduction of a Workplace Parking Levy, and a Clean Air Zone or a Low Emission Zone in a bid to reduce air pollution in the city.

No exact details have been confirmed.

Sheffield

Clean Air Zone for HGVs, buses, coaches, taxis and vans in 2021

Sheffield City Council has propsals in place to have its own Clean Air Zone within the city's inner ring road and centre by early 2021.

The proposed scheme wouldn't affect private cars - only HGVs, buses, vans and taxis that fail to meet emission standards.

Non-compliant vans and taxis will be charged £10 a day, while HGV and bus operators will be stung with a daily £50 fee.

Slough

Potential Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone (date TBC)

Like Reading, Slough has been identified as a location with poor air quality standards.

Pressure from the government has mounted on the local authority to introduce a Clean Air Zone, though plans have yet to be released.

York

Clean Air Zone for buses only in 2020

Unlike all other locations in this list, York's Clean Air Zone will only impact buses entering the historic city centre.

Non-complaint diesel buses (that don't meet Euro VI standards) will be charged if they enter the restriction five or more times per day.

Autocar's guide to the best things to do in 2020 .
As part of our guide to the perfect motoring year, here are some top tips on what to fill your time with over the next 12 monthsThere are plenty of ways you can indulge your love of cars this year, and it doesn't have to cost you the world. This, then, is your updated New Year's resolutions list, as compiled by Autocar writers.

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