TRADES and van drivers operating in central London will have to shell out an extra tenner just to get to work, if Mayor Boris Johnson gets his way.
The £10 diesel tax, doubles the daily cost to van drivers operators entering central London, because it will be on top of the normal congestion zone charge under proposals being drafted by Mayor Boris Johnson.
And several other major UK cities are considering following London’s example on low emission zones backed by charges and penalties. Johnson is also pressing the government to charge all diesel drivers more statutory vehicle tax.
The £10 diesel tax could represent a huge extra financial burden on companies having to trade in London and other large UK cities.
Pressure is growing on city councils to improve air quality to avoid fines from the European Commission after it launched legal proceedings against the UK in February for breaching pollution limits.
At least 20 cities including Sheffield, Leicester, Bradford, Birmingham and Bristol are considering introducing low emission zones. Oxford created a low emission zone for buses this year which may be extended to apply to all vehicles.
The £10 diesel tax in central London could come into force as early as 2020 and would mean diesel van drivers would pay a minimum of £20 every time they entered the capital’s ‘ultra-low emission zone’.
Diesel vehicles that meet the Euro 6 emissions standard would be exempt.
Matthew Pencharz, the mayor’s environment adviser, told The Times: “We want to see an unwinding of incentives that have driven people to diesel.
“Euro engine standards on emissions have not delivered the savings expected, meaning we now have a legacy of a generation of dirty diesels.”
The move could highlight the potential of electric vans currently available including Renault Kango Maxi Z.E. (£25,546), Nissan e-NV200 Combi (£24,353) both priced including the current £5,000 government EV grant.