Birmingham City Council’s plan for a Clean Air Zone to help tackle the problem of air pollution has received Government approval.
The council submitted its business case in February after being required by the Government to achieve compliant air quality limits in the shortest possible time.
Birmingham plans to introduce a Clean Air Zone covering all roads within the A4540 Middleway Ring Road (but not the Middleway itself) from 1 January 2020.
The Government has also allocated £14.2 million from its Implementation Fund for the delivery of signs, cameras and other infrastructure, and £38 million from the Clean Air Fund to support a package of mitigation measures to support businesses and individuals likely to be impacted by the introduction of a Clean Air Zone.
The council is also offering a range of exemptions to allow eligible businesses and individuals more time to make the switch to compliant vehicles.
Councillor Waseem Zaffar, Cabinet Member for Transport and Environment at Birmingham City Council, said: “We clearly have a major public health crisis in our city, with people being exposed to illegal and unsafe levels of air pollution.
“I’m pleased that we will have nearly £15 million to support the taxi community, both Hackney carriage and private hire drivers, to upgrade to cleaner and greener vehicles, enabling them to continue providing their valuable service to the city.
“I’m also pleased to have worked with the council’s Licensing and Public Protection Committee, and particularly its chair, Councillor Barbara Dring, to secure this package of measures.
“In light of the reduced funding for a scrappage scheme, we will continue to work with other council leaders and combined authorities across the country to lobby the Government for a national diesel scrappage scheme.”
Exemptions from the Clean Air Zone charge are as follows, along with the time period the exemption will last:
- Commercial vehicles registered within the Clean Air Zone (LGV/HGV/coaches – maximum 2 vehicles per company) – 1 year
- Commercial vehicles registered within the Birmingham area travelling to the Clean Air Zone with an existing finance agreement beyond 2020 (LGV/HGV/coaches – maximum 2 vehicles per company) – 1 year
- Residents living within the Clean Air Zone, who have their private vehicles registered to their address – 2 years
- Individuals travelling into the Clean Air Zone for work – 1 year
- Visitors to key hospitals, GP offices and care homes within the Clean Air Zone – duration of stay, with exemption running for 1 year
- Vans and minibuses registered as providing essential community and school transport services that are classified as section 19 operators, registered for operation in Birmingham – all years
- Vehicles registered with disabled tax class – exempted for the duration of the CAZ
For more information visit the website here