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January 29 2019
By Tim Deakin

Tim is Editor of routeone and has worked in both the coach and bus and haulage industries.

£50 charge for non-Euro 6 PCVs in Leeds CAZ

Exemptions for buses to state schools, and £2m of retrofit money for operators based within the zone

The Leeds CAZ requirements will affect many operators in West Yorkshire

Most coaches and buses which do not meet Euro 6 emission standards will be charged £50 per day to enter the Leeds Clean Air Zone (CAZ) from 6 January 2020 after plans by Leeds City Council (LCC) were approved by the government.

LCC has received more than £23m that will be made available to retrofit or replace non-compliant vehicles operated by “affected businesses” based within the CAZ.

As originally planned, £2m of that will go to operators of non-scheduled coaches and buses. Each affected vehicle will be eligible for support of up to £16,000, which will be allocated via a competition. LCC previously estimated that there are 137 eligible coaches and buses.

LCC has also confirmed that its proposed exemption for vehicles that are used to transport pupils to and from state schools in Leeds has been approved, although the technical policy details are still to be finalised.

How the money will be accessed has not yet been revealed, although Cllr James Lewis, executive member with responsibility for sustainability and the environment, says it will be released “swiftly.” He adds: “We recognise that this will be a difficult transition for some businesses to make. We have not received all the funding that we asked for, but we are pleased to confirm that a number of significant financial support packages will be available to assist owners of affected vehicles.”

The CAZ includes the city centre and a swathe to the east, north and west that is largely bordered by the A6120 Outer Ring Road. Three industrial areas that are within the CAZ – in Holbeck, Pudsey and Seacroft – have been exempted until 1 January 2025.

Buses used on scheduled services will not be eligible for funding. LCC has previously said that it believes that their operators have already “benefitted greatly” from the Clean Bus Technology Fund, which made over £4m available for Euro 6 retrofit in Leeds and West Yorkshire.

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