THE much delayed Clean Air Zone (CAZ) in Birmingham will now be launched on June 1, 2021, the City Council has announced.
It will cover an area of the city inside the inner ring road (A4540 Middleway) and once live will mean that the owners of the most polluting vehicles, which account for around 25 per cent of the vehicles on the city’s roads, will need to pay a daily charge to drive into or through the CAZ.
The City Council is also providing a range of exemptions and financial incentives, with a total value of around £35 million, to help residents, city centre workers and businesses prepare for the introduction of the CAZ.
Applications and expressions of interest for all of these schemes should visit the website: BrumBreathes.co.uk.
The start date, postponed from earlier this year, follows meetings with Rebecca Pow MP, the under-secretary of state for environment, food and rural affairs and Rachel Maclean MP the under-secretary of state for transport.
The Council said poor air quality remains the largest environmental risk to public health in the UK and investing in cleaner air and doing more to tackle air pollution are priorities for the government and local authorities.
Clean Air Zones aim to address all sources of pollution, including nitrogen dioxide and reduce public exposure by using a range of measures tailored to a specific location.
Councillor Waseem Zaffar, cabinet member for transport and environment at Birmingham City Council, said: “The majority of drivers on Birmingham’s roads will not need to pay the daily charge but if you do then you may be eligible for an exemption or one of the financial incentives.
“So, I would encourage everyone to check the Brum Breathes website today. And everyone can still play a role in improving the air we all breathe by trying to reduce the number of shorter journeys we make by car every day.”
Paul Faulkner, chief executive of Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce, said: “It’s good to see the Council has taken a firm step and committed to a new start date for the Clean Air Zone.
“Although we welcomed the original postponement earlier in the year, in this current climate the last thing businesses need is more uncertainty as they grapple to overcome the myriad of challenges that the fallout from Covid-19 has created.”