Request ID: FOI-0624-2122 Date published: 20 July 2021
Please can you provide information showing how many Londoners voted for the ulez extension and how much this is costing to implement and how are Londoners going to be paying for this?
TfL Ref: FOI-0624-2122
Thank you for your request received by Transport for London (TfL) on 25 June 2021.
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Please can you provide information showing how many Londoners voted for the ULEZ extension and how much this is costing to implement and how are Londoners going to be paying for this?
Air pollution is the biggest environmental risk to health. In London, we have already made great progress in improving air quality over recent years, introducing bold policies including the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ), which helped reduce roadside nitrogen dioxide (NO2) by 44 per cent in central London from February 2017 to January 2020. However, air pollution is not only a central London problem, which is why expanding the ULEZ to Inner London has been part of our plans since we first consulted on it in 2017.
Expansion of the ULEZ is also contained in the Government’s 2017 air quality plan for reducing roadside NO2 emissions which, with other measures, are projected to bring London into compliance with legal limits by or before 2025.
The legislation for road user charging schemes such as the ULEZ does not permit a referendum on the issue, unlike what happened in Edinburgh. The Mayor and TfL undertook three public and stakeholder consultations, from October 2016, on a series of proposals to improve air quality in London, including changes to the ULEZ. The consultation on the proposed expansion of the ULEZ was undertaken from November 2017 to February 2018. Over 37,500 responses were received from the public and businesses, with 56 per cent supporting or strongly supporting the expansion of the ULEZ boundary to inner London, and 74 per cent backing its connected proposals for tougher Londonwide Low Emission Zone (LEZ) standards for heavy vehicles. Responses were also received from 142 stakeholder organisations, of which 109 indicated support for ULEZ expansion. Full details of the consultation and responses are available at https://consultations.tfl.gov.uk/environment/air-quality-consultation-phase-3b/
The implementation costs for the expanded ULEZ are currently estimated to be between £120 million and £130 million. This cost includes improved access to public transport, staffing and the signs, cameras and back office systems needed to make the scheme operational. The Mayor and TfL have sought to deliver the infrastructure needed to operate the scheme in the most cost-effective way possible.
The Greater London Authority and TfL has funded, without national support, the expansion of the ULEZ and mitigation measures, such as scrappage schemes to help low income and disabled Londoners, charities and small businesses to scrap older, more polluting vehicles in favour of cleaner ULEZ-compliant vehicles and greener forms of transport. The Mayor has asked Government that London be given access to its fair share of funding from the national Clean Air Fund, which we are currently excluded from. Other cities, including Bath, Birmingham, Greater Manchester and Portsmouth have introduced or will introduce Clean Air Zones, including financial support for affected individuals and businesses, entirely funded by Government.
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Eva Hextall FOI Case Management Team General Counsel Transport for London