61 local authorities are required to at least consider introducing a Clean Air Zone (CAZ), and others are free to do so. CAZs can either involve charging certain types of vehicle for entering or moving within a zone, or other air quality improvement measures. Whatever is introduced must have the effect of reducing pollution levels below mandatory EU standards as soon as possible – a charging CAZ would be the safest way of demonstrating rapid compliance.
Charging CAZs are a form of road user charging and require an order under the Transport Act 2000. There are four levels of possible zone:
We are currently acting for Leeds City Council in developing their charging CAZ.
Low emission zones and ultra low emission zones are a form of clean air zone and are the name given to them by Transport for London. We have extensive experience of such zones also.
Workplace parking levies (WPLs) are a system whereby employers are charged for providing parking spaces for their workers as a way of reducing congestion and raising money for transport projects.
Nottingham City Council is currently the only local authority to have introduced a WPL and we acted for them by developing the scheme, drafting the scheme Order and liaising with the Department for Transport. We also advise Nottingham City Council on clean air proposals implemented via traffic regulation measures.
We are also advising on developing a framework for the introduction of WPL schemes in London.
Our specialist Public Affairs and Communications team work with clients on political, community and media engagement, as well as message development and reputation management on such potentially controversial measures.