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Council to introduce diesel surcharge for parking

Islington Council is introducing a borough-wide surcharge for diesel vehicles using short stay parking as it encourages other councils to follow suit.

Vehicle exhaust

The short-stay parking surcharge will apply to all diesels regardless of their emissions standard.

Applicable to all diesel-fuelled vehicle regardless of their age or emissions standard, the £2 charge will be automatically applied from January by the council’s pay-by-phone system based on DVLA data.

It  joins a separate diesel surcharge for residents’ parking permits in Islington which has been in place for several years.

The council said Islington suffers from some of the highest pollution levels in London and also reiterated its call to the Mayor of London for a diesel-free London by 2025.

Cllr Claudia Webbe, Islington Council’s executive member for environment and transport, said: “The main causes of death in Islington are cardiovascular disease, respiratory diseases and cancer – all of which are exacerbated by diesel emissions. It is not right that local residents should have to bear the burden of through-traffic pollution on their health.”

However, speaking to the Times, Edmund King, president of the AA, labelled the surcharge as a “diesel demonisation tax” that makes no distinction between new and old vehicles.

King added: “Many modern diesels are cleaner than older petrol models. It would be far more effective to target the 10% of gross polluters that cause 50% of the problem.”

Next week’s Autumn Budget is widely expected to bring a new diesel tax following the government’s announcement in the Spring Budget despite pleas from organisations including the BVRLA that such a tax would be counterproductive and “grossly unfair”.

Earlier this year Westminster Council announced it was introducing a diesel surcharge from April, bringing a 50% hike in fees for parking diesel cars.

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 14 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. Natalie works across the magazine portfolio and updates the company websites with daily news, interviews and road test content.