London’s T-Charge comes into effect today

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In an attempt to improve air quality in London, drivers of older, more polluting vehicles will now have to pay almost twice as much to drive in central London.

The T-Charge is a £10 daily tax effective from today, which applies primarily to diesel and petrol vehicles registered before 2006 and do not meet the “Euro 4” 2005 European directive to regulate vehicle emissions. The new tax will be applied from 07:00-18:00 on weekdays which is in line with the existing congestion charges, and will result in some drivers paying £21.50 a day to drive in these areas.

It has been suggested that over 9,000 London citizens die prematurely each year from health conditions caused by the polluted air.

The T-Charge is the first of a series of new rates being introduced in London, and is part of an £875 million effort by the Mayor’s office to address air pollution in London. It is due to be replaced by a stricter Ultra-Low Emission Zone in 2020, although the Mayor of London is said to be consulting on bringing this forward to 2019. This will mean diesel cars registered before September 2015 and petrol cars registered before 2006 will face a £12.50 charge.

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