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SMMT criticises London's low emission zone for discriminating against diesels

Date: 17/12/2014 04:25:00
Category: Fuel Efficiency
Author: Laura Varley

London's ultra-low emission zone (ULEZ) has been criticised by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) for not being tough enough on older petrol cars.

In an open letter to Mayor of London Boris Johnson, the SMMT explained that letting older vehicles with petrol engines that don't comply with 'Euro 6' standards into London's ULEZ will undermine plans to reduce the amount of air pollution in the city. Under the scheme, vehicles which produce a high amount of pollution will be charged an extra £12.50 a day to drive into central London, businessgreen.com reports.

The ULEZ is expected to encourage more people to use low emission petrol, hybrid and electric vehicles. However, the SMMT argues that the scheme could encourage drivers to purchase petrol cars which are up to 14 years old, instead of newer, cleaner diesel vehicles. In fact, Euro 6 diesels are 80 per cent cleaner than they were in 2000, the SMMT states.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said: "SMMT is urging London to be more ambitious with a universal standard for petrol and diesel vans and cars which would remove any confusion, strengthen the uptake of cleaner technology and bring air quality benefits sooner."

If the scheme gets past the proposal stage, the world's very first ULEZ will be introduced on September 7, 2020, reports fleetworld.co.uk.

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