The new toxic air levy charges drivers £12.50 per day when they visit the centre of London, however, not all cars are affected. To avoid paying, your petrol car must be younger than 13 years old, and a diesel vehicle must be younger than 4 years old.
Some critics have pointed out that the new ULEZ scheme will negatively impact poorer income families and small businesses, as they may not be able to easily afford to upgrade to newer, more environmentally-friendly vehicles. Alternatively, drivers of supercars such as the Lamborghini Aventador and Aston Martin DB11 will be able to enter the ULEZ zone without consequence.
There is also outcry over the inclusion of diesel vehicles from prior to 2015, as many people felt that they were falsely advised to buy diesel cars by Gordon Brown during his “dash for diesel” campaign whilst Chancellor.
Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, hopes that the scheme will help tackle the “public health emergency” facing London residents. According to Khan, thousands of Londoners are dying prematurely as a result of toxic air – with an increased risk of cancer, asthma and stroke listed among the main culprits.
The ULEZ currently covers the same area as the congestion charge and is active 24 hours a day 7 days a week, however, there are plans for it to be extended to cover the whole of inner London from October 2021.