FTA Response to London''s Proposed Ultra-Low Emissions Zone

The FTA has issued a response to the proposed introduction of an area of low carbon emissions.

ID: 1449508
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(businesspress24) - The Mayor of London’s proposed Ultra-Low Emissions Zone, or ULEZ, has been high on the public agenda lately. While the need to do something about global carbon emissions - as well as London’s poor air quality - is indisputable, the nature of the ULEZ and the timing of its introduction could place an enormous strain on small businesses, potentially pricing many of them out of the capital’s lucrative market. The FTA has released a statement commenting on the pros and cons of Sadiq Khan’s proposed legislation.

What Is the Ultra-Low Emissions Zone?

The ULEZ is an area of London wherein more polluting vehicles will be subject to a charge should they enter. The zone is aimed at reducing carbon emissions and improving the air quality for those who live and work in the capital, in light of the fact that thousands every year die early as a result of the city’s high levels of air pollution. The ULEZ is slated for a 2019 start date, and is set to expand a year later, in 2020. A public consultation into the zone has just been launched, and chief among those scrutinising the proposed legislation are courier and haulage operators, whose businesses are set to be most affected by it.

What’s Good About It?

As mentioned above, London’s air quality is far from ideal. Thousands die each year and thousands more suffer health problems as a result of air pollution, making cleaner air a top priority. Additionally, it is hoped that by restricting high-emissions vehicles from the capital (the beating heart of the UK’s logistics market), operators will make the switch to eco-friendly vehicles in order to preserve their range of motion, thus resulting in a net reduction in carbon emissions. The increased demand for eco-friendly vehicles is also hoped to result in an influx of investment in research into low or zero-emissions vehicles.

What’s Bad About It?

The main grounds on which the FTA have recently criticised the proposed ULEZ are the impact it could have on small businesses. Making the switch to less polluting vehicles with lower carbon emissions isn’t cheap, and plenty of smaller operators wouldn’t be able to afford to do so. Additionally, plenty of individuals without the capital to invest in a new fleet from the get-go rely instead on second-hand vehicles, typically purchased around four years into their working life. This time lag could make it impossible for such fleets to drive within London, at least until a couple of years after the start of the ULEZ, and the resulting reduction in market opportunities could spell the end of many small businesses.

Additionally, the proposal has been characterised as being ill-thought-out and incentivising equally (or more) harmful practices. For example, haulage companies could be incentivised to replace larger, more polluting vehicles with a large number of smaller vehicles, or more trips with the same vehicles, in order to sidestep the ULEZ. This could itself pose a problem, as several smaller engines will usually cause significantly more air pollution, including carbon emissions, than one high-emissions HGV.

The issues of air quality and climate change are nothing to be sniffed at, and the introduction of incentives to move to low-emissions vehicles and stimulate research into such vehicles is a definite step in the right direction. However, the existing proposals will have to be refined in order to work properly while allowing small businesses to operate.

More information:
http://www.pharmacyofbeverlyhills.com/ http://www.haulageexchange.co.uk/transport-contracts

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Norman Dulwich is a Correspondent for Haulage Exchange, the leading online trade network for the road transport industry. Connecting logistics professionals across the UK and Europe through their website, Haulage Exchange is the leading service for matching haulage jobs with available vehicles. They also provide expert articles on issues facing the freight industry like carbon emissions and many others. Over 4,000 transport exchange businesses are networked together through their website, trading jobs and capacity in a safe ''wholesale'' environment.

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Date: 07/28/2016 - 07:14
Language: English
News-ID 1449508
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Firma: Haulage Exchange
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