London Set for Pollution Fix 0

Almost as soon as Sadiq Khan was elected as London’s Mayor, he set out strict and clear policies which will affect the pollution levels that Londoners are subject to. At this moment in time, Londoners are poorly affected by the awful pollution levels even though there are already clear zones in place. Right now, there is already a congestion charge and multiple greener buses than ever but, according to London’s new mayor; the current level of pollution has left the city a ‘laughing stock’.

London Set for Pollution Fix

So what has Mr. Khan got planned to tackle this issue of vehicle pollution? Well, he has set out an apparent new toxic charge which will come into effect in 2017. This charge in itself will be different to the current congestion charge and will affect vehicles with a high toxicity level. It will however affect the same area as the current congestion zone and will also work in the same way (cameras and registration plate recognition). For those who do drive the dirtiest cars, then another £12.50 could be added. This could then make the total to drive in central London near £24 a day.

That is the plan in its very early stages however. Mr. Khan has then stated that the congestion zone could also widen too. By 2020, the zone could stretch as wide as the north and south circular roads. This may act as an extremely good incentive for an extra 2.5 million drivers to switch to a much greener vehicle for the future. Although, the new charge must target vehicles which cause high pollution and toxicity on the roads and not just in the lab; this is a lesson that the motoring has surely learned after the Volkswagen emissions scandal.

At this moment in time, there is an apparent 9,400 premature deaths in London are a direct result of the high pollution levels. So, with this new pollution strategy, will London’s air begin to clear up?

Photograph: Graeme Robertson for the Guardian