August 22, 2019
Businesses operating fleets of Euro 5 diesel vehicles in London will now have to pay an air quality surcharge. Drivers will have to pay a 50% charge for parking in Westminster streets which ranges from 85p to £2.45 per hour, depending on the location.
This will affect all vehicles registered before 2015, including wheelchair accessible vehicles and minibuses. The charge came into force at the beginning of the month following a successful trial in the borough.
Low Emission Areas
The trial took place around Marylebone and Fitzrovia over the last two years and reduced the number of older diesel vehicles parking in these areas by 16%. The surcharge will be used to help take on the challenge of low air quality. Westminster is the first borough to introduce the levy but there’s now plans to roll it out city wide.
The council held a public consultation to discuss the best way to roll out the scheme to the entire city. Over 1,300 London residents backed the move and are keen to improve the air quality.
Westminster City Council’s Cabinet Member for environment and city management, Councillor Tim Mitchell, commented: “We’re standing up and taking action to improve air quality in Westminster, the evidence proves that the diesel parking surcharge can make a difference.
“Our residents were clear that they want us to roll out the 50 per cent surcharge out across the city. Air quality is one of their top concerns, so this move is an important and logical next step in our commitment to improving the air we breathe.”
There’s a push to improve air quality throughout the city and there’s been a number of initiatives launched. This includes installing more EV fast charging points, raising awareness about engine idling and launching a £1 million school clean air fund.