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November 08 2017
By Mel Holley

Mel is the Editor at routeONE magazine. He has more than 30 years’ experience in road and rail transport journalism.

ULEZ brought forward to April 2019

Coach operators have only 16 months to ensure their fleets are Euro 6 ready for the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ), after London Mayor Sadiq Khan decided that it will start on 8 April 2019.

This is 17 months earlier than first planned.

He also plans to upgrade the rest of the London-wide LEZ to Euro 6 in 2020, and expand the ULEZ in 2021.

The Confederation of Passenger Transport (CPT) is meeting Deputy Mayor Val Shawcross this month and will express its concerns.

Says CPT Coaching Manager, Andy Warrender: “CPT is concerned that the ULEZ will not only have a detrimental effect on day-to-day coach operations, but potentially serious repercussions for London’s tourism economy.

“The original planned ULEZ start date of September 2020 was already going to be a tough ask, and the early introduction will leave very little time for the production of new vehicles or approved retrofit systems. 

“We support the push for cleaner air in the capital but are concerned that if these proposals are not introduced carefully, then they will have the opposite effect.”

The ULEZ means that London will have the world’s toughest emissions standards. The existing LEZ, which covers all London, roughly inside the M25 stays in place. Non-compliant coaches and buses attract a £200 daily charge.

The ULEZ operates in central London, in the same area as the Congestion Charging Zone, and non-compliance will be an extra £100 per day.

In a U-turn, the Mayor says that Transport for London buses “especially the New Routemaster” should meet “the same Euro 6 requirement” as from April 2019. Previously, there was going to be an exemption.

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