Oxford Council has reached another milestone in the journey to zero carbon emissions – yesterday they published updated proposals for the Zero Emission Zone (ZEZ). This includes a charging zone, which will see drivers of polluting vehicles charged up to £20 a day to enter the zone.
The proposed Red Zone marks the next step towards cleaner air in Oxford, and a dramatic reduction in the health risks for people living and working in the city. It is also expected that the ZEZ will improve air pollution levels in towns and villages across Oxfordshire because the buses and taxis and other vehicles that serve Oxford also serve towns and villages across the county. There are 1,600 vehicles daily in the Red Zone, almost 80% of them diesel powered.
In addition, a Green Zone is proposed for introduction in 2021/22, covering the rest of the city centre – although views are not being invited on this yet.
The key points of the latest proposals are:
- The introduction of a charging scheme in the Red Zone between 7am-7pm, with a £10 charge for non-compliant vehicles entering the zone. These hours have been chosen because 70% of the vehicles enter the streets at that time and they are when cycle and pedestrian flows are at their highest.
- Discounts for all blue badge holders entering the zone until December 2024.
- Exemptions for businesses registered in the Red Zone until December 2024, followed by a discount until December 2030.
- A 90% discount for residents living in the zone until December 2030.
- Buses and Oxford licensed Hackney Carriages which drive within the planned Zero Emission have already agreed timelines for zero emissions fleets across Oxford and will not be subject to charges.
Details are available here:
There is an informal consultation on the proposals which run to the 31st January 2020, have your say here.