Sheffield Clean Air Zone: Where is it, what cars and vehicles will be charged and how much will it cost?
A Clean Air Zone has been announced for Sheffield, meaning some people will have to pay to drive in parts of the city.
The plans have been approved by Sheffield City Council and will see the most polluting vehicles pay a daily charge to access Sheffield city centre.
The decision was made in October and plans are now being made for how it will be put into practice, as consultation has started.
The rules will be in force for taxis, LGVs, coaches, buses and HGVs which do not meet the emission standard.
Air pollution contributes to 500 early deaths a year in Sheffield and parts of the city have exceeded legal limits of nitrogen dioxide since 2010.
Coun Johnson said this is expected to bring Sheffield back to legal levels of air pollution within the next few years but that will not necessarily mean the air is safe.
Here is everything you need to know about how it will work.
Where will Sheffield Clean Air Zone be in force and is there a map?
The zone will cover the inner ring road and city centre, including Park Square and the A61 / Parkway junction.
The plans were first announced in 2018 but the council delayed implementing them due to Covid-19, saying the situation in 2020 was “dramatically different” to the one in which original proposals were developed.
A map of the plans has been published by the council, showing exactly where it will be introduced.
When will Sheffield Clean Air Zone be introduced?
The plans, although approved, are currently in the consultation stage, and are due to come into force in late 2022.
Who will Sheffield Clean Air Zone affect?
Taxis, LGVs, coaches, buses and HGVs which do not meet the emission standard will all be affected by the new rules.
Drivers of private vehicles will not be charged at this time. The council said this was because they make up 80 per cent of road traffic but contribute 50 per cent of pollution whereas buses, HGVs and taxis are responsible for half of Sheffield’s air pollution but make up only 20 per cent of traffic.
Automatic number plate recognition cameras will be in place to enforce the rules.
First Bus and Stagecoach say they are confident their buses will be compliant before the zone is introduced but taxi and van drivers will need to have Euro 6 diesel or Euro 4 petrol engines to avoid the charge.
How much will vehicles be charged in Sheffield Clean Air Zone?
Buses, coaches and HGV drivers face a £50 daily charge for going through the zone. Vans, minibuses, private hire taxis and hackney carriages will pay £10 a day.
What grants are available to avoid the Sheffield Clean Air Zone charge?
Sheffield Council is offering a number of grants and loans, using Government funding, so drivers can upgrade their vehicles and avoid paying the penalty.
These are the grants the council has made available:
Wheelchair accessible hackney carriage taxis – up to £10,000 grant or interest free loan
Private hire vehicles – up to £3,000 grant or interest free loan
Vans – up to £3,500 grant or interest free loan
Lorries – up to £16,000 grant
Buses and coaches – up to £16,000 grant
Originally black cabs would be required to be either electric or retrofitted to liquid petroleum gas while private hire taxis would have to be Euro 4 petrol hybrid or better.
But there are limited electric hackney carriages which are wheelchair accessible.
The current timeline for the project means that Sheffield City Council will submit a full business case to the Government by early 2022, including any revisions arising from the consultation, and any grants will be handed out by the middle of the year.
What has been said about Sheffield Clean Air Zone?
Opinion appears to be divided over the plans, with just over 50 per cent of people (163) who took part in a poll saying they support the Clean Air Zone proposals and 49.7 per cent (161) saying they do not.
Although a smaller sample size, views were also split over whether private cars and motorbikes should have been included in the plans.
Of those who took part in that poll, 48.3 percent (29) said they should have been included and 51.7 percent (31) said they should not.