London’s mayor, Sadiq Khan, will introduce an extra levy from October 2017, for all the owners of older vehicles if they want to drive their vehicles within the congestion charge zone.
We are talking about a tax of £10 that will be paid by the owners of older vehicles to drive in London’s center starting from October 23, 2017.
The fee is known as the T-charge, and Khan explained that the tax is more than necessary because the level of air pollution in London has reached levels that are affecting the health of the children by creating lung diseases.
Khan continued by saying “… today, on the 14th anniversary of the start of the congestion charge, I’ve confirmed we are pressing ahead with the toughest emission standard of any major city, coming to our streets from 23 October, 2017.”
The announcement has arrived after fresh warnings this week about the low quality of the air in London.
With the same occasion, the mayor launched an online vehicle checker, so the driver will be able to check if their vehicle will be affected by the T-charge or not.
The T-charge is expected to affect a number of 10,000 older vehicles, which are considered the most polluting ones, and will be applied to people that own a vehicle that doesn’t meet at least the Euro 4 standards (diesel and gasoline cars built before the year 2006).
To drive a pre-Euro 4 vehicle in the center of London from October 23, 2017, between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday to Friday, a driver will have to pay the amount of £21.50 per day.
The number of cities around the world that are taking measures against the very polluting vehicles is growing, for example Paris has already banned from its streets, the older and more polluting vehicles between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. from Monday to Friday.
Children that are living in such polluted areas have four times more chances to have a lung disease in adulthood, so improving the air quality in these cities is the only action that can stop and reverse this effect on children’s health.
In the UK, is estimated that air pollution is causing almost 40,000 premature deaths every year, and this sad reality was labeled in April, 2016 by a cross-party committee of the MPs, as a “public health emergency”.
Another solution to reduce the level of air pollution in London is represented by the diesel scrappage scheme proposed by the government.
The scrappage scheme for the older diesel vehicles is supported by some MPs, but other groups consider that the money would be better spent by supporting the public transportation sector, and healthy activities such as cycling and walking.
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