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London Mayor calls for national ‘dirty’ diesel scrappage fund

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has urged ministers to adopt a national scrappage fund to persuade motorists to replace diesel cars and vans to tackle ‘killer toxic air’.

Fuel pumps

Proposals include payments of £3,500 to scrap up to 70,000 polluting vans and minibuses in London.

In his manifesto the Mayor committed to put forward a proposal to government for a National Vehicle Scrappage Fund. Now in a new document, the Mayor has set out how the fund could be used to pay for three key proposals that could be delivered by the Government over a two-year period at a cost of £515m for London.

These include payments of £3,500 to scrap up to 70,000 polluting vans and minibuses in London and a national fund to support charities and small businesses that often own older diesel and mini buses (approximately £245 million in London).

In addition a credit scheme valued at £2,000 would help low-income households in cities scrap up to 130,000 polluting cars, with incentives for car clubs.

The plans also include a proposal for payments of £1,000 to help scrap up to 10,000 older polluting London taxis.

The proposals would help reduce the cost of introducing and expanding the Ultra Low Emission Zone and help to achieve a 40% reduction in London road transport NOx emissions.

The call follows the recent second phase of Mr Khan’s air quality consultation, which set out detailed proposals for the early introduction of the Ultra-Low Emission Zone and its expansion, as well as proposals for an emissions surcharge on older vehicles. Last month also saw Mr Khan reiterate his calls for a scrappage scheme as the Capital was put on an air quality alert.

Mr Khan said: “The toxic state of our air leaves us with no choice but to rid our city of the most polluting diesel vehicles. It is shocking that nearly half of new car sales in the UK are still diesel vehicles and the national system of vehicle excise duty still incentivises motorists to buy these polluting cars.

“A national diesel scrappage fund is the cost effective way to deliver significant emission reductions while reducing the economic impact on those most affected, such as small businesses, charities and low income households.”

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 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.