‘It’s highway robbery!’ Drivers rage at low emissions zones banning petrol and diesel cars

ULEZ is a 'clumsy mechanism' says former MP Stephen Pound

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Four new Low Emission Zones were formally launched over the weekend as the Government attempts to phase out the most polluting petrol and diesel cars on the roads. The Low Emission Zones in Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh and Glasgow have been brought in to improve air quality.

Although charges are not yet being levied onto all fossil-fuelled vehicles, older petrol and diesel vehicles will be charged to drive inside the zone.

If vehicles do not meet the emissions standards, drivers could face a £60 fine, which is halved to £30 if paid early.

Diesel cars and vans will need to meet the Euro 6 standard, which apply in other emissions based charging zones, which generally apply to vehicles registered after September 2015.

And Express.co.uk readers flocked to the site to show their anger at the new measures.

The majority were keen to show their belief that Low Emissions Zones are something of a revenue-boosting exercise for many authorities.

Commenter ‘Skipper’ wrote: “No need for any of this anti car stuff. It’s all about profit for councils. Nothing’s broken don’t fix it.”

‘Tarquinfarquar’ added: “Lots and lots of older vehicles to be seen in Birminghams ULEZ, and their owners stump up the £8 charge to do so.

“Yet the council reckons they have proof that the atmosphere is cleaner, thanks to ULEZ. True lies if you ask me.”

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‘CHiPs’ said: “Where are the human rights lawyers, RAC, and AA, for drivers? Vehicles undertake a strict emission test as part of the MOT.

“This allows you to drive anywhere in the UK. Except now, councils are moving the goalposts so a vehicle that passed the MOT won’t reach the fudged standard applied by councils.

“It’s nothing more than highway robbery.”

Other readers wanted to point out the effect of LEZs on local trade and city centres.

‘Wych1’ explained: “This banning older cars in towns is a recipe for a loss of trade in these places. I Love Scotland and spend a reasonable length of time there using Hotels and Restaurants spend time in shops. Maybe spend a few hundred pound a year.

“How many more people like me who will think the same.

“Sounds Like Edinburgh won’t get that business any more.”

‘Bluenorw’ concurred, adding: “Exactly right. Our regular trips to Bristol will cease when their ULEZ comes in and we will go elsewhere.”

There was also concern over the cost of EVs with ‘610’ writing: “How to make the poor poorer, how will they afford new passable cars?”

“Even if they do eventually save enough to buy one, the anti car rules will keep being updated so people never catch up,” agreed ‘Skipper’.

There were pockets of support for the measures however, with ‘Ezergood’ writing: “There is no need to panic.

“You still have the option of not driving a polluting contraption into the non-polluting contraption zone.”

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