The Clean Air Zone

Photograph of non-electric cars, taxis and buses.

Cities around the country are introducing clean air zones (CAZs) in a bid to reduce pollution and improve the quality of life for residents.  

Removing more polluting vehicles from city and town centres will have a positive impact on the health of both residents – especially for Disabled people with impairments and health conditions such as breathing difficulties and allergies to certain chemicals.

What is the Clean Air Zone?

A Clean Air Zone (CAZ) is an area in the United Kingdom where targeted action is taken to improve air quality.  A CAZ can be non-charging or charging.

These zones are created in areas where air pollution levels are dangerous to everyone’s health.  The zones improve the quality of local air, making it safer to breathe.

Whether a vehicle is charged when entering or moving through a CAZ depends on the type of vehicle and how well it filters the vehicle fumes before they come out of the exhaust pipe.  This is referred to as the vehicle’s Euro standard.   

Bristol will only charge for vehicles that have a rating of Euro 3 or lower.  This will usually mean the vehicle is more than 16 years old.

Each local authority decides how much polluting vehicles are charged when travelling in CAZ.  In Bristol, it will be £9 for private petrol cars, private diesel cars, taxis and light good vehicles.  It will be £100 for buses, coaches and heavy good vehicles.

Charges would apply 24 hours a day, seven days a week but vehicles would only be charged once in each 24-hour period.  If you live within the zone and drive a non-compliant vehicle, you’ll only be charged if you make a journey.

Why are they being brought in?

These zones are often the best way for towns and cities to improve local air pollution levels, and they have been shown to work.

Creating CAZs across England is key to improving air quality, protecting public health, and supporting the move to a low carbon future.

What are the types of clean air zones?

There are 4 types of clean air zones, Class A to D.

A) Buses, coaches, taxis, private hire vehicles.

B) Buses, coaches, taxis, private hire vehicles, heavy goods vehicles.

C) Buses, coaches, taxis, private hire vehicles, heavy goods vehicles, vans, minibuses.

D) Buses, coaches, taxis, private hire vehicles, heavy goods vehicles, vans, minibuses, cars, the local authority has the option to include motorcycles.

When does it start in our city?

Bristol will start charging on 28 November 2022.

Some information for Disabled people

People who have cars registered as a Disabled person’s vehicle with the DVLA won’t be charged for using the CAZ.  Those that aren’t registered with the DVLA but are Disabled people who have a Blue Badge will be exempt for one year only;

We at the Forum are currently talking with the Council about how people with a Blue Badge but don’t own a car themselves, can be exempted;

There are grants that are available for those whose current car is a pre-Euro 5 category vehicle.

Websites

You can find out more information on Bristol’s Clean Air Zone on the Council website: https://www.bristol.gov.uk/streets-travel/bristol-caz

You can find out whether you do need to pay to drive in a CAZ on the Gov.uk website: https://www.gov.uk/clean-air-zones or on the Council website here: https://www.bristol.gov.uk/streets-travel/bristol-caz/charges-and-checker.

For information on what grants or financial support you may be able to get, visit the Council website here: https://www.bristol.gov.uk/streets-travel/bristol-caz/financial-support.

Our Next Disability Discussion Session

Text: Disability Discussions.  The Clean Air Zone.  August 17th 12 noon - 1pm, online and St Pauls Learning Centre Classroom 2
Graphics: Women with a guide dog in front of a car

The next session of our monthly Disability Discussions will be on the Clean Air Zone.

The session is taking place on August 17th, midday to 1pm on Zoom.

If you’d like to join the session, contact Emma by emailing her at: cca.bristoldef@gmail.com

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