Greater Manchester asked to accelerate inclusion of vans in CAZ
Greater Manchester has been told by the government to accelerate plans to include vans in its Clean Air Zone (CAZ), by two years.
The ministerial instruction to include vans at an earlier date would see small businesses using non-compliant vans paying a daily charge 18 months from now, rather than the city-region’s proposed dateline of 2023.
Greater Manchester is asking the Government to “play fair on clean air”, following receipt of a letter from minister Dr Thérèse Coffey MP to the 10 Greater Manchester local authorities in response to the GM Clean Air Plan Outline Business Case.
In the Government’s response to the GM Clean Air Plan proposals, it directs Greater Manchester to implement a Clean Air Zone category C (where non-compliant buses, coaches, taxis and private hire vehicles, lorries and vans would pay a daily penalty for entering or travelling within the zone) in 2021.
This differs to the proposals submitted to government, where non-compliant vans were proposed to be exempt from daily penalties until 2023.
Greater Manchester had also requested £116m of clean vehicle funding to help local businesses upgrade to clean vehicles and thus avoid any penalty for travelling through the Clean Air Zone.
This included a £59m Clean Freight Fund, for upgrading HGVs and vans.
Instead the Government is offering £36m in funding, ring-fenced to create a network of cameras that would issue fines to those in breach.
In May 2019 Chris Fletcher from the Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce spoke about the city-region's plans to clean up its air, and ambitions for government money to kick-start the transition to cleaner vehicles.
Read more: Greater Manchester Clean Air plans