Oxford has put forward a proposal to ban all petrol and diesel cars, taxis and buses in the city centre excluded from six central streets from 2020.
The area will then be expanded in 2025 and 2030 to encompass the entire city centre, and finally in 2035 HGVs will be banned from the same zone – making it what is thought to be the world’s first Zero Emissions Zone.
Emissions experts believe the proposal would cut levels of nitrogen oxide (NO2) to as much as 74 percent. John Tanner, Oxford city council environment chief said the move was “urgently needed”
“Toxic and illegal air pollution in the city centre is damaging the health of Oxford’s residents. A step change is urgently needed; the Zero Emission Zone is that step change.”
The cost for these proposals are estimated to be in the region of £14 million, this includes the taxi companies, bus operators and haulage firms. The two councils will then need to spend a further £7million on infrastructure, including charging points, administration and a new CCTV system with automatic number plate recognition to enforce the ban.
Anyone found to be driving a non-electric vehicle in the centre after the ban is put in place can expect an automatic fine of £60.