Clean Air Zones Update – May 2021

Clean Air Zone traffic sign

Air pollution has negative effects on health, and is a major cause for premature all-cause mortality. It is linked to many respiratory diseases, lung cancer, asthma, stroke and development of coronary heart diseases.

In the UK, one of the leading causes of air pollution is transportation. Some areas across the UK fail to meet the national air quality objectives, so for that reason local authorities are introducing Clean Air Zones (CAZ) in order to tackle the high levels of CO2 in the air. CAZ is an area where the pollution exceeds the limits of the EU limit value, and measures are taken in order to improve air quality. Vehicles which do not meet the emission standards need to pay a daily charge. Electric Vehicles are exempt, due to their zero direct emissions.

Exemptions and different initiatives such as scrappage scheme are available to drivers, as well as online tools e.g. to check if your vehicle meets the requirements. Visit Clean Air Zones – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk) to find out more.

As of 15 March 2021, a class C Clean Air Zone was introduced in the centre of Bath. Vehicles which don’t meet the emission standards have to pay the following daily charge:

  • Minibuses, vans and taxis – £9
  • Trucks, lorries, busses and coaches – £100

Private cars and motorbikes will not be charged, even if they’re used for work.

To find out more information about Bath’s Clean Air Zone click here.

On 1st of June 2021, Birmingham will launch a Class D Clean Air Zone. The CAZ will cover all roads within the A4540 Middleway Ring Road but not the Middleway itself. The daily charge to drive through Birmingham’s Clean Air Zone will be:

– Cars, taxis and LGVs (vans) – £8
– Coaches, buses and HGVs – £50

For further information visit A Clean Air Zone for Birmingham | Birmingham City Council.

The central London Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) is expanding on 25 October 2021 to create a single, larger zone. The expanding zone will include up to the North Circular Road (A406) and South Circular Road (A205), with the North and South Circular Roads themselves not in the zone. The expanded ULEZ will continue to operate 24/7, including weekends (other than Christmas Day).

Vehicles that exceed the required ULEZ emission standards will need to pay a daily charge:

  • Cars, motorcycles and vans (up to and including 3.5 tonnes) – £12.50
  • Lorries (over 3.5 tonnes) and busses/coaches (over 5 tonnes) – £100

More information about London ULEZ can be found here.

Bristol’s CAZ D has been confirmed and would be implemented from October 2021. Non-compliant vehicles need to pay the following daily charge:

  • Private petrol and diesel cars, taxis, LGVs – £9
  • HGVs, buses and coaches – £100

Find out more information on Bristol’s Clean Air Zone (CAZ) – bristol.gov.uk.

Portsmouth is another city where CAZ class B has been approved and will be launched in November 2021. The location of the proposed zone will be to the south west of Portsmouth.

The daily charge to travel through the zone for non-compliant vehicles will be:

  • HGVs, buses and coaches – £50
  • Taxis and private hire vehicles – £10

Private cars, motorcycles and vans will not be charged.

To find out more information, click here.

Zero Emission Zone (ZEZ) Pilot is set to be introduced in Oxford city centre in August 2021.

Vehicles that don’t meet the emission standards will need to pay a charge from £2 to £10 between 7am and 7pm. As of August 2025, the charge will increase to between £4 and £20.

Visit Oxford’s Zero Emission Zone for more details.

There are more areas across the UK where CAZ may be implemented in 2021 and 2022. If you need further information, or if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact us.