The Mayor of London has announced plans for 10 new Low Emission Bus Zones to cut emissions on the capital’s most polluted routes.
A combination of hybrid and clean Euro VI standard buses will be deployed on these routes, with nitrogen oxide (NOx) bus emissions in these areas expected to be cut by 84%.
The reduction in pollution will benefit the 172 schools located within 100 metres of the new zones, the Mayor’s office has said.
The Mayor Sadiq Khan has targeted hotspots with some of the highest levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) pollution, where older buses contribute significantly to road transport emissions.
The new routes include Edmonton, Stratford and Haringey, bringing the total number of Low Emission Zones planned to 12.
In August, two initial zones were announced for Putney High Street and Brixton to Streatham (see AirQualityNews.com story).
In addition to the Putney and Brixton zones, the 10 new routes will cover: A12 Eastern Avenue, Lewisham to Catford, Haringey, Camberwell to New Cross, Wandsworth to St John’s Hill, Edgware Road (Kilburn to Maida Vale), Edmonton to Seven Sisters, Uxbridge Road to Shepherds and Chiswick High Road to Kensington.
The Putney High Street zone will be delivered in March 2017 and the Brixton to Streatham route is set for October 2017. The other 10 routes will be delivered by 2020.
Sadiq Khan said: “Tackling London’s filthy air is one of my main priorities and I am delighted to be delivering on that commitment by introducing these new Low Emission Bus Zones. Removing the oldest, dirtiest buses from our streets and delivering Low Emission Bus Zones will make a big contribution to tackling transport pollution.
He added: “I want other cities around the world to work with me on demanding cleaner bus technology and I urge our government to take their responsibility seriously and introduce a national diesel scrappage scheme to deliver the step change we need on the dirtiest diesel vehicles.â€?
Leon Daniels, TfL’s managing director of Surface Transport, said: “These Zones will not only help improve health and air quality in the local areas, but will also help make those areas more pleasant places to be and encourage greater numbers of people to walk or cycle. By using bus priority measures we will also make bus journeys quicker and more reliable for our customers.â€?
In addition to the Low Emission Bus Zones, a £50m investment in Bus Priority Schemes across London as part of the TfL Business Plan will ensure buses have priority and are able to keep moving, cutting idling emissions and speed up journey times for passengers.
“We’re hoping national government will take a leaf out of London’s book and provide plans and resources so other cities can also tackle air pollution.”
Areeba Hamid, clean air campaigner at Greenpeace, said: “These are welcome initiatives that show the Mayor is serious about his intentions to clean up our air, and protect Londoners from the harmful effects of air pollution. We’re hoping national government will take a leaf out of London’s book and provide plans and resources so other cities can also tackle air pollution to protect everyone’s health.”
Further additional Low Emission Bus Zones will be considered across the capital in the future if they are deemed appropriate.