Newcastle Clean Air Zone (CAZ) plans to impact businesses despite update

CAZ proposed for Newcastle

Despite updates, the plans for a Clean Air Zone (CAZ) in Newcastle will still hurt business, according to FTA.

It says that the most effective method to improve air quality won’t be achieved, yet businesses will suffer instantly.

Newcastle City Council is due to launch a public consultation to its new plans in the coming days; however, the FTA is calling for local businesses to have their say during the consultation.

Margaret Simpson, head of policy for Scotland & Northern England at FTA, said: “As the voice of the UK logistics sector, FTA is calling for Newcastle City Council to reconsider its proposals. 

“FTA and its members are fully committed to improving the city’s air quality, but it is unfair to place this burden solely on the shoulders of local businesses and vehicle operators; we urge Newcastle City Council to include private cars in the Zone.

“After all, the logistics sector is the lifeblood of the city, providing businesses, schools and hospitals with the goods they need to operate.” 

Any bus, HGV, taxi van or private hire vehicle that enters the proposed Clean Air Zone, which fails to meet the environmental standards- Euro VI or 6 for diesel and Euro 4 for petrol vehicles- will be charged once the 2021 scheme is launched.

Simpson concluded: “CAZs do not provide any lasting benefit to air quality, as the Euro VI/6 vehicles required to enter a zone without charge will come into fleets of their own accord, as part of the natural fleet replacement cycle.

“In fact, by the start of 2021, FTA estimates that more than half of the UK truck fleet will already be Euro VI, meaning the scheme will soon be redundant. 

"In the view of FTA, to secure long-term air quality improvements Newcastle City Council would be better placed to focus its resources on incentivising the uptake of ultra-low emission vehicles. 

“We are pleased to see in the new plans that the geographical area has been significantly reduced, this will limit its impact on businesses operating in the area.

“We are calling on anyone who will be affected by the Zone to submit their response to the updated plans; do not miss this chance to have your say.”  

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