By Staff Writer Ben Pfeffer.
On Monday April 8, London has introduced the world first ever 24-hour, 7 day a week air pollution charge zone. This means that vehicles inside of the zone must pay a fee if their vehicles do not meet the strict emission standards.
The purpose of introducing this Ultra Low Emission Zone, or ULEZ, is to reduce toxic air pollution and protect public health, according to the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan. In the statement, according to CNN, Khan said:
“This is a landmark day for our city. Our toxic air is an invisible killer responsible for one of the biggest national health emergencies of our generation. The ULEZ is the centerpiece of our plans to clean up London’s air — the boldest plans of any city on the planet, and the eyes of the world are on us.”
The introduction of this ULEZ should encourage more civilians to buy electronic vehicles and dispose of their fuel-chugging atrocities.
The fee for cars, vans, and motorcycles is £12.50, which is about $16, but the fee for trucks, buses, and coaches is £100, which is $130.
Imagine driving to work to drop off your eighteen-wheeler and traveling through London.
All of a sudden, you are charged $130, where you wouldn’t have on April 7th. The infamous red double-decker buses in London, all 9,200 of them, will be updated to meet the standards of the ULEZ by October 2020.
I think this ULEZ is a genius idea that has been necessary, but we are doing it too late. This zone should spread quicker and force cheap electronic vehicles to be sold to the city.
We are facing a major problem of environmental destruction, which includes climate change and global warming, and the ULEZ is the biggest step toward fixing that problem that affects the daily lives of the people causing the harm, us.
There are currently about 2 million Londoners living in an area that has nitrogen dioxide levels exceeding the legal limits set by the European Union.
Due to ULEZ, in 6 years, this will be fixed, and London will have their nitrogen dioxide levels back down below the legal limits.
The ULEZ currently covers a small, but populated area in central London. In the ULEZ are currently: St. Paul’s Cathedral, Houses of Parliament, and Buckingham Palace along with other landmarks in that area.
Planned for October 25, 2021 is a much larger area of London that covers all the way over to the London City Airport, Greenwich Park, beyond Hyde Park, and beyond Regent’s park.
They need to expand faster, or other countries need to follow London’s lead, if this idea is going to make any change.
Initially, back in February of 2017, there was a “T-charge” in the same area that did the same to only highly-polluting vehicles which caused the number of vehicles entering the area to drop by 11,000 a day and has caused a 55% increase in emissions-compliant vehicles in the area, according to CNN.
I believe that America should introduce something similar to, or exactly like, what London has introduced on Monday, April 8. The Earth has almost, if not already, reached the point of no return when it comes to climate change and global warming, which pollution contributes to.
This needs to be done in a larger fashion as soon as Trump gets out of office because we know very well that it won’t get done while he’s sitting in the Oval Office.
When discussing global warming, I’m sure we all know that Trump has said that climate change is a hoax invented by the Chinese, even though he has changed to say that he believes in it but doesn’t know if it’s a problem… it is a problem.