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London Mayor confirms Ultra-Low Emission Zone will start in 2019

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has announced that the world’s first Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) will start from April 8 2019.

Last month, Khan introduced the new Toxicity Charge (T-Charge) in central London to help deter the use of older more polluting vehicles, and encourage walking or cycling, or using public transport, in the build up to the ULEZ. 

From April 2019, the ULEZ will replace the T-Charge and operate in the same area, alongside the congestion charge but (unlike the T-Charge and Congestion Charge, which are only in place on weekdays) it will operate 24 hours a days, seven days a week, 365 days a year.

There will also be two ULEZ charge levels: £12.50 a day for cars, vans and motorbikes and £100 a day for lorries, buses and coaches. These charges will be in addition to the Congestion Charge (C-Charge), so the more polluting cars and vans would pay £24 per day and lorries would pay £111.50 during C-Charge hours.

All revenue raised will be used by Transport for London (TfL) to help maintain a greener transport fleet and reduce pollution across the transport network.

ULEZ will also affect thousands more vehicles, up to 60,000 every day, compared to the estimated 6,500 a day affected by the T-Charge. Diesel vehicles that do not meet the Euro 6 standards and most petrol vehicles that do not meet the Euro 4 standard will have to take action or pay. 

Broadly, a four-year-old or newer diesel car will meet the requirement in 2019 when the scheme comes into force, making the ULEZ the tightest emission standard adopted in the world.  

The Mayor has also decided that TfL buses – especially the New Routemaster bus – should meet the same Euro 6 requirement as other heavy vehicles and private buses from April 2019.

Road transport emissions in central London are expected to reduce by an additional 20% in 2019 as a result of the early introduction of the ULEZ. This includes: NOx emissions from HGVs are expected to reduce by nearly 50%; coach and non-TfL bus emissions will reduce by more than a third; and emissions from cars and vans are expected to reduce by eight and 12% respectively.

Khan said: “I am pleased to confirm that from 8th April 2019 – 17 months earlier than planned – stricter standards for diesel vehicles will apply 24/7 across central London. This builds on the success of the T-Charge and is part of my comprehensive plan to clean London’s air. But we now urgently need the Government to step up and provide the support to Londoners and businesses required to help them meet these crucial standards.”

The ULEZ and T-Charge are just some of the ambitious hard-hitting measures the Mayor is introducing to improve London’s toxic air quality – he is developing proposals for a London-wide Euro 6 standard for buses, coaches and lorries in 2020 and expanding the area of the ULEZ for all vehicles (including, cars, vans and motorcycles) up to the North/South Circular roads in 2021. A consultation will start later this year.

TfL’s director for city planning, Alex Williams, said: “We are moving quickly to implement the Mayor’s bold proposals to improve air quality in the capital.

“Bringing forward the introduction of the central London ULEZ was popular with the public in the consultation and will be pivotal in dramatically reducing harmful emissions. It also gives drivers and businesses the certainty they need when deciding to buy new vehicles, as well as being a catalyst for people to make more sustainable travel choices.”

The Mayor has also called on the Government to put in place a national vehicle scrappage scheme to help people replace vehicles affected by the proposals or switch to cleaner alternatives. There was overwhelming support for this in the first round of his consultation. He also wants fiscal incentives, like vehicle excise duty, to be reformed so they support his proposals and encourage people to own and use the cleanest vehicles.

How does the ULEZ differ from the T-charge?




Start date

23 October 2017 (confirmed)

8 April 2019 (confirmed)


Central London Congestion Charge zone (CCZ)

Initially central London CCZ,  and then in future years expanding to inner London for all vehicles and London-wide for buses, coaches and lorries (subject to consultation)

Emission standards

Minimum Euro 4 for both petrol and diesel (roughly more than ten years old)

Minimum Euro 6 for diesel vehicles (roughly more than four years old in 2019); Euro 4 for petrol (roughly more than 12 years old in 2019)

Hours of operation

Monday to Friday, 7am-6pm (excludes Bank Holidays and the period between Christmas Day and New Year's Day inclusive)

24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year


£10 a day for any non-compliant vehicles

£12.50 a day for non-compliant cars, vans and motorbikes and £100 a day for non-compliant buses, coaches and lorries

Discounts and exemptions

90 per cent discount for residents; 100 per cent discount for blue badge holders; and exemptions for emergency service vehicles, NHS vehicles and motorbikes

(see Note 2 regarding residents of the CCZ)

There will be a ‘sunset period’ for residents of the CCZ and all vehicles adapted for disability needs before the emission standards come into effect.

Which vehicles are affected and what emission standards do they have to meet?

Vehicle type
Includes hybrid vehicles

Minimum emission standards

Charge if vehicle does not meet the ULEZ standards. This is payable in addition to any applicable LEZ or CCZ charges 

Penalty charge if vehicle does not meet ULEZ standards and daily charge not paid. This is in addition to any LEZ or CC penalty charges.

Motorcycles, mopeds, motorised tricycles and quadricycles (L category)

Euro 3


£130 (reduced to £65 if paid within 14 days)

Cars, and small vans (not exceeding 1,205kg unladen weight)


Larger vans, 4x4 light utility vehicles, motorised horseboxes, pickups (exceeding 1,205kg unladen and not exceeding 3,500kg GVW)


Ambulances and motorcaravans (2,500kg to 3,500 kg GVW)


Minibuses (more than eight passenger seats, not exceeding 5,000kg GVW)

Euro 4 (petrol)/Euro 6 (diesel)


£130 (reduced to £65 if paid within 14 days)

Lorries, motorised horse boxes, breakdown and recovery vehicles, snow ploughs, gritters, refuse collection vehicles, road sweepers, concrete mixers, fire engines, tippers, removals lorries (exceeding 3,500kg GVW)


Buses and coaches (more than eight passenger seats, exceeding 5,000kg GVW)

Euro 6


£1,000 (reduced to £500 if paid within 14 days)

























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  • K.May - 03/11/2017 15:11

    Would be interesting to see the impact the ULEZ has on tourism UK and from Europe to see if these charges deter visitors.

  • Derek Webb - 03/11/2017 18:24

    Another nice little earner, £24. Just get into the place- it ain't that good. A the other "mayors" can now follow suit so moving around towns by car to do business is going to be taxed- because that's all it is. If I undertook a servey of business car driving non Londoners and asked if they supported the new charges- would they support the charges, I don't think so. On the other hand if l asked some central Londoners (most of whome don't own or drive a car) the same question what might there answer be.

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