The proposed Clean Air Zone was supposed to be launched in January 2020 but it has now been delayed until July 2020 at the very earliest. Even this date now seems too optimistic. This is because central government is late in delivering the necessary vehicle checking software. To make things worse, the government is now considering offloading its responsibility for delivering the charging system onto the city council. This will add further delay.
This lack of commitment and leadership by central government is totally unacceptable. We need to urge the government to take its responsibility seriously in cutting air pollution.
Please ask your MP to press the government to ensure the CAZ is not delayed any further. To compensate for this delay the government should also provide additional funds for the city council to enable it to introduce interim clean air measures such as funding more zero- emission taxis.
Here is a template email you can send to your MP. Please edit for your own use.
As a concerned constituent, I was deeply disappointed to learn that the proposed Clean Air Zone for Birmingham will now be delayed until July 2020 at the earliest. I am extremely worried by this delay, as this means my family, fellow residents of Selly Oak and indeed people in other parts of the city, will now be exposed to illegal levels of nitrogen dioxide for longer than is necessary. This will inevitably have a harmful effect on the health of many people, especially children and older people. I am particularly worried about the impact this will have on the health of my three year old son, as I am aware that children are more vulnerable to air pollution than adults.
I understand that the delay is because the necessary vehicle-checking software which the government was supposed to have delivered will be three months late. I am also aware that the government is responsible for delivering the system for collecting payments, but is now considering passing this on to the City Council. This will potentially add further delay.
The government must take responsibility for this delay and lack of commitment. It is crucial that it gets a grip and provides the necessary funding and resources to enable the charging Clean Air Zone to be launched as soon as possible.
Given the adverse effect on people’s health which this delay will have, I urge you to ask the government the following questions:
How will it ensure the software is ready by February 2020?
If the government passes the responsibility for the system to collect payments to the city council how will it ensure is delivered on time?
Will the government provide additional funding for other clean air measures to compensate for the delay to the CAZ? Such measures could include more segregated cycle routes and more funding for zero-emission taxis.
Please impress upon the government that it is absolutely vital the CAZ is introduced and properly enforced. This must be done as soon as possible if air quality across the city is to be improved and people’s health is to be protected.
Thank you for considering this matter. I look forward to your reply.