The Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) in London now encompasses all boroughs starting today (August 29), as displayed in Getty images. Non-ULEZ compliant drivers will now have to pay a daily fee of £12.50 to drive in any area within Greater London. To assist residents in adapting to the new regulations, Sadiq Khan introduced a scrappage scheme, offering a £2000 grant to those who scrap their eligible non-ULEZ compliant vehicles. Stay updated with the ULEZ live blog on Metro.co.uk. Earlier this month, the scrappage scheme expanded its reach to include all Londoners, after initially only being available to individuals on specific welfare benefits. However, there is one caveat – in order for a car to qualify for the scrappage scheme, it must have a valid MOT, road tax, and insurance.
This means that drivers might have to spend thousands of pounds to repair old vehicles, only to have them scrapped and destroyed.
In addition to meeting the ownership duration requirement of at least one year, a car must also be registered at the recipient’s address to be eligible for the scheme. A man interviewed by The Sun stated that he would have to spend £760 to make his 1994 BMW roadworthy again in order to qualify for the scheme. He exclaimed, “It’s an absurd situation! I can’t believe I’m obligated to spend a fortune fixing it up just to have it crushed a few days later. It contradicts the Ulez scheme’s principles. This is a much-loved car that has been taxed, insured, and MOT’d for years.” Nonetheless, a spokesperson from TfL stated to MailOnline, “Thousands of Londoners experience premature deaths each year due to toxic pollution. Children are growing up with underdeveloped lungs, and many people are suffering from life-altering illnesses caused by pollution, such as cancer, lung disease, dementia, and asthma. The objective of the scrappage scheme is to remove the most polluting vehicles from the roads. Since this car cannot be driven on the road due to its expired MOT, paying to scrap a car that cannot be driven would not achieve the aim of the scheme. If the vehicle passes an MOT, we can offer a grant payment of up to £2,000 to remove the polluting vehicle from the roads.”
Many have criticized the scrappage scheme as a waste of money, as drivers will only benefit if their car is valued at less than £2,000; otherwise, they could receive more money by selling the vehicle. Nevertheless, TfL asserts that nine out of ten cars observed driving in London on a daily basis are ULEZ compliant, with petrol cars registered after 2005 and diesel cars registered after 2015 generally exempt.
Sadiq Khan has faced backlash regarding the scheme (Picture: PA). Why has the ULEZ been expanded? The objective of the ULEZ is to reduce pollution and enhance air quality in London. According to TfL, 94% of vehicles in the initial ULEZ now meet the stringent emission standards daily. This is a significant increase from 39% in 2017, when the scheme was first implemented.
Click to enlarge (Picture: Metro.co.uk). The levels of harmful nitrogen oxide pollution have decreased by almost half in central London since 2017, but pollution is not limited to central London. TfL notes that the highest number of deaths resulting from air pollution occur in outer London. That is why ULEZ must be expanded “in order to provide cleaner air for the five million Londoners living in outer boroughs.”
To find out more, visit ULEZ scrappage scheme warning as drivers could fork out thousands to be eligible.