Scrappage scheme for polluting vans in London


The Mayor of London has announced a £23 million scheme to help business owners scrap polluting vans, in a bid to move to cleaner vehicles and prepare for the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ).

Businesses with fewer than 10 employees will be eligible for funding to scrap vans that do not meet emission standards set by the new Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ).

The scheme is planned to be in place ahead of the introduction of London’s new central London ULEZ, which from 8 April 2019 will bring in charges for vehicles which do not meet stricter emission standards that apply 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Diesel vans which do not meet the latest Euro 6 standard will have to pay £12.50 a day to drive in central London.

The Mayor has also asked ministers to match-fund London’s proposed scrappage scheme with £23 million of Government money, funded either from the £245 million National Clean Air Fund or from underspend on Highways England’s £75 million air quality fund.  This would enable City Hall to put in place further scrappage support for other Londoners, including those on low incomes, and charity vehicles. It would also give ministers the evidence they need to judge scrappage proposals from other cities, and demonstrate the transformational benefits of a truly national scrappage fund.

Gerry Keaney, Chief Executive of the BVRLA, said: “It is great that the Mayor is providing extra financial support for upgrading vans, which are an essential tool for so many SMEs operating in London. More and more firms are choosing to lease because it provides an affordable, fixed cost way of accessing the latest low-emission vehicles. The BVRLA and its members look forward to working with the GLA on its plans to remove older, more polluting vans from London’s roads.
Vehicle rental and car clubs will also play a vital role in helping businesses and individuals make the shift to cleaner, ULEZ-compliant motoring from April 2019.”   

In response, Caroline Russell AM, Chair of the London Assembly Environment Committee, said:

“We welcome the move by the Mayor to help smaller businesses to reduce the numbers of these polluting vehicles on our streets. However, a matter of days after he declared a ‘Climate Emergency’ in London, we need bolder Mayoral policies that will reduce the number of vehicles on London’s roads altogether.

“This is a step in the right direction but it is a drop in the ocean compared to what could be done to reduce traffic and therefore pollution on our streets."