Taxes and charges on road users - Transport Committee Contents

Examination of Witnesses (Questions 320 - 321)



  Q320  Chairman: Could you tell us what benefits the Low Emission Zone has brought?

  Ms Dix: The Low Emission Zone has brought so far a 2% reduction in some of the air quality pollutants which are given out and in terms of the heavy diesel engine vehicles which come into Central London over 95% of them are compliant with the Euro III standard. So of the vehicles which are coming in and are subject to the Low Emission Zone scheme the majority are compliant and as a result of that—and it has only been operating a year—there is a 2% reduction in some of those vehicle emissions, so it is taking us towards the EU objectives which the scheme was set to address.

  Q321  Chairman: Finally, how much money is currently being lost because foreign registered vehicles are not paying UK charges like the Congestion Charge?

  Mr Lester: Overall in London we estimate that for parking and similar charges between 8 and £12 million a year is lost from foreign registered vehicles. Congestion charging is a similar amount and if you turn that into the economic effect, not just the financial effect, you can double that again, so overall it may be as much as £50 million a year in economic disbenefits because effectively foreign registered vehicles are immune from enforcement on congestion charging, parking and traffic regulation.

  Chairman: Thank you very much for coming and answering our questions. It was very helpful.

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Prepared 24 July 2009