To tackle air pollution, there will be an Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) in central London starting from the 8th April 2019 within the same area as the Congestion Charge. This means that most vehicles such as cars, vans and trucks will need to meet new, tighter exhaust emission standards or pass liability for a daily charge for access to drive within the ULEZ area.

A warning about air pollution come about from Public Health England (PHE) who have highlighted that 28,000 to 36,000 deaths in the UK annually could be attributed to long-term exposure to air pollution. In London, every child breathes toxic air daily which can damage their lung growth and most of this comes from road transport. This introduction of the ULEZ will help reduce exhaust NOx and PM emissions, which will help to improve air quality; therefore, making London a safer and healthier place to live, visit and work. The change will not only positively affect younger individuals, it will also be beneficial to older people and those who have respiratory problems, along with residents of high polluted areas.

As it stands, the vast majority of company cars will escape charges because of the relatively short replacement cycles, on average three years. However, most vans and trucks can have much longer replacement cycles, meaning that likelihood of mixed-fleets running non-compliant vehicles is increased. The Freight Transport Association (FTA) have said that they would like to see more support for those businesses that will struggle most to comply with the clean air zones, for example small businesses and operators of specialist fleets.

All vehicles will need to meet the Euro VI standards for all heavy duty engines, with the ULEZ being enforced on the basis of the declared emissions of the vehicle rather than the age. The euro VI engines are usually those registered with the DVLA after 2014.

You can check your vehicle here: https://tfl.gov.uk/modes/driving/ultra-low-emission-zone/check-your-vehicle

Map of the ULEZ in London adapted from the RAC- https://www.rac.co.uk/drive/advice/emissions/low-emission-zones-what-you-need-to-know/