Edinburgh could be set to implement a low-emissions zone (LEZ) from 2022 with a two-year grace period if plans receive approval on June 17.
Following on from similar schemes in Bath, Birmingham, London and Oxford, the scheme would prevent all non-Euro 6 diesel vehicles from entering the city centre from spring next year. Petrol vehicles that don’t meet Euro 4 emission standards would be banned, too.
First proposed for consultation in 2019, the LEZ has now been recommended for approval. If approved, a 12-week public consultation will take place to find out views on the scheme. This would then inform a report issued in the autumn before the process of implementing the LEZ would take place.
Once in place, the scheme will see non-compliant vehicles fined for entering the zone. Charges are set at £60, though this is halved if paid within 30 days. The City of Edinburgh Council states that the penalty rate will roughly double for each subsequent contravention within a 90-day period.
A two-year grace period will arrive with the LEZ, however, meaning enforcement will actually start in spring 2024.
Councillor Lesley Macinnes, Transport and Environment Convener, said: “As we approach Clean Air Day, which aims to tackle air pollution and its harmful effects on our health and wellbeing, it’s fitting that we’re progressing our own plans to significantly improve air quality in the city.
“A great deal of analysis and monitoring has gone into the latest proposals for a Low Emission Zone in Edinburgh. This takes into account the urgent need to lower emissions for the good of our health, while remaining aware of the impact on local businesses, residents and on traffic patterns.
“We know from our consultation in 2019 that lowering air pollution matters to everyone, so I look forward to hearing from the public on the preferred option, if approved by committee.”