• Would you want pollution and congestion charges for drivers where you live?

    It’s great to see the UK leading the way in tackling our cities’ pollution levels.

    Starting next week those driving in London will see an increase to congestion charges, becoming a city with some of the strictest emission standards in the world, according to the BBC.

    It’s not just London - cities such as Birmingham and Leeds are looking to introduce pollution charges on vehicles in their city centres. And recently here in Bath there’s been huge debate over the introduction of a clean air zone with potential charges of £9 to drive into the centre.

    Would pollution charges deter you from using your car to drive into town?

    Would you support a congestion charge where you live to reduce the amount of traffic, or are there better ways to do this?
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  • It’s great to see the UK leading the way in tackling our cities’ pollution levels.

    Starting next week those driving in London will see an increase to congestion charges, becoming a city with some of the strictest emission standards in the world, according to the BBC.

    It’s not just London - cities such as Birmingham and Leeds are looking to introduce pollution charges on vehicles in their city centres. And recently here in Bath there’s been huge debate over the introduction of a clean air zone with potential charges of £9 to drive into the centre.

    Would pollution charges deter you from using your car to drive into town?

    Would you support a congestion charge where you live to reduce the amount of traffic, or are there better ways to do this?
  • Nice post nataly.
    It is interesting subject matter, obviously more expense ideas are always met with disbelief and outrage. However i firmly believe new petrol and diesel cars should be taxed more heavily.
    Taking norway as a prime example where it is the most expensive country in europe to own and drive a petrol car with taxes that can hit 100% of the purchase price, fully electric cars in 2018 accounted for 58% of all new car sales.
    Given the choice people will stick to what they know out of fear chaos and lack of understanding so the only way is to force the issue and if that means high taxes on dirty cars then so be it.
    If a new car cost twice as much as an electric version of the same car the take up rate would increase on a massive scale and this would filter down to the secondhand market more quickly allowing the less wealthy of us to also go electric.
    3
  • Nice post nataly.
    It is interesting subject matter, obviously more expense ideas are always met with disbelief and outrage. However i firmly believe new petrol and diesel cars should be taxed more heavily.
    Taking norway as a prime example where it is the most expensive country in europe to own and drive a petrol car with taxes that can hit 100% of the purchase price, fully electric cars in 2018 accounted for 58% of all new car sales.
    Given the choice people will stick to what they know out of fear chaos and lack of understanding so the only way is to force the issue and if that means high taxes on dirty cars then so be it.
    If a new car cost twice as much as an electric version of the same car the take up rate would increase on a massive scale and this would filter down to the secondhand market more quickly allowing the less wealthy of us to also go electric.
  • Hi Nataly,

    Its a no brainer at the end of the day and clearly essential!
    However like most things in life theres winners and losers.

    We've got an old Petrol Ford Focus so its a no no for me to travel into central London combined with the London congestion charge so double bubble and the road tax is more.

    We still have the option without restrictions to get to the outskirts of central London which suits our needs leaving all options open, and although we are currently considering what newish vehicle to get, if we did not have our car option (re having to pay LEZ) then that would be the trigger for change!

    In the main we have historically always used the tube, the rail and bus to get into and around the city...its so convenient and often quicker.
    But for lots of people decisions are having to be made and for some a costly affair changing vehicles sooner than envisaged.

    ​As an example if my partner had to pay to attend her ageing mothers needs as we have to do often in the middle of the night we would be prompted to get another vehicle sooner, but we can afford to.

    It is essential, it is hard for those with less travel options etc, but this must be nudged along.
    2
  • Hi Nataly,

    Its a no brainer at the end of the day and clearly essential!
    However like most things in life theres winners and losers.

    We've got an old Petrol Ford Focus so its a no no for me to travel into central London combined with the London congestion charge so double bubble and the road tax is more.

    We still have the option without restrictions to get to the outskirts of central London which suits our needs leaving all options open, and although we are currently considering what newish vehicle to get, if we did not have our car option (re having to pay LEZ) then that would be the trigger for change!

    In the main we have historically always used the tube, the rail and bus to get into and around the city...its so convenient and often quicker.
    But for lots of people decisions are having to be made and for some a costly affair changing vehicles sooner than envisaged.

    ​As an example if my partner had to pay to attend her ageing mothers needs as we have to do often in the middle of the night we would be prompted to get another vehicle sooner, but we can afford to.

    It is essential, it is hard for those with less travel options etc, but this must be nudged along.
  • Hi Nataly, I gave up my car few years back and go everywhere on foot almost. Obvs outside of my own city, to visit my olds for eg, I have to use rail then, but nearly everything else I am fortunate to be able to do by foot.

    So, seeing or rather smelling, the ongoing daily pollution and more and more vehicles on the roads, it’s a thumbs up from me re these charges yes. Definitely 👍👍👍👏👏👏
    Peace is always beautiful.

    WALT WHITMAN
    3
  • Hi Nataly, I gave up my car few years back and go everywhere on foot almost. Obvs outside of my own city, to visit my olds for eg, I have to use rail then, but nearly everything else I am fortunate to be able to do by foot.

    So, seeing or rather smelling, the ongoing daily pollution and more and more vehicles on the roads, it’s a thumbs up from me re these charges yes. Definitely 👍👍👍👏👏👏
    Peace is always beautiful.

    WALT WHITMAN
  • Ah I didn't know Norway was so hot on electric car sales, thanks @Jon1 Interesting idea on encouraging electric vehicle sales in the UK, overall a cheaper product + less (or no!) road tax could be a real winner


    Quote Originally Posted by Strutt G View Post

    In the main we have historically always used the tube, the rail and bus to get into and around the city...its so convenient and often quicker.
    But for lots of people decisions are having to be made and for some a costly affair changing vehicles sooner than envisaged...

    It is essential, it is hard for those with less travel options etc, but this must be nudged along.
    Very good point @Strutt G - it's so hard to make sure that all aspects are considered when bringing in new ideas as they have so many knock-on effects.

    Maybe if less travel options is a problem (/difficult for people living a bit further out) then a good way to help lower pollution is to improve public transport routes and accessibility?

    Transport such as buses etc can be really expensive - does this put you off?
    @Bev wow, giving up the car is a huge step to take! How did you find the swap from car to foot and rail? What 'drove' you to make that decision?
    1
  • Ah I didn't know Norway was so hot on electric car sales, thanks @Jon1 Interesting idea on encouraging electric vehicle sales in the UK, overall a cheaper product + less (or no!) road tax could be a real winner


    Quote Originally Posted by Strutt G View Post

    In the main we have historically always used the tube, the rail and bus to get into and around the city...its so convenient and often quicker.
    But for lots of people decisions are having to be made and for some a costly affair changing vehicles sooner than envisaged...

    It is essential, it is hard for those with less travel options etc, but this must be nudged along.
    Very good point @Strutt G - it's so hard to make sure that all aspects are considered when bringing in new ideas as they have so many knock-on effects.

    Maybe if less travel options is a problem (/difficult for people living a bit further out) then a good way to help lower pollution is to improve public transport routes and accessibility?

    Transport such as buses etc can be really expensive - does this put you off?
    @Bev wow, giving up the car is a huge step to take! How did you find the swap from car to foot and rail? What 'drove' you to make that decision?
  • Well Nat, it was never really a decision to make, it happened by chance really. I’d always wanted to drive and had a car as soon as passed at 17, and other cars thereafter, and then thought I’d always drive, like the majority of us do. You don’t envisage being without wheels.

    Then prob about ten years ago now, maybe bit less, can’t remember, the car I had failed MOT 🔧⚙️and needed too much doing to it, so decided to get it towed away, and planned on buying new one.

    In the interim, started walking 🏃*♀️To and from work, hour each way, then walking to gym each eve, 15 mins each way, plus got backpack 🎒 for shopping. Suddenly everything seemed doable (and more healthy 🙀) by foot, and I considered giving up my gym 💪🏋️*♂️membership. I was soooooo into the gym, so this was massive, but really honestly felt the walking 🏃*♀️💨was healthier, and saved me a whole lot 👛too of course.

    of course, trips to see family around the country, Devon, Somerset, Cambridge, meant trains, 🚂but I found that a whole lot more relaxing than motorway driving 👍, and have simply just adjusted. Easy when there’s only me to consider of course, totes different and impossible for most, but suits me currently, and blessed to have the legs and fitness to do it 🙏
    Peace is always beautiful.

    WALT WHITMAN
    2
  • Well Nat, it was never really a decision to make, it happened by chance really. I’d always wanted to drive and had a car as soon as passed at 17, and other cars thereafter, and then thought I’d always drive, like the majority of us do. You don’t envisage being without wheels.

    Then prob about ten years ago now, maybe bit less, can’t remember, the car I had failed MOT 🔧⚙️and needed too much doing to it, so decided to get it towed away, and planned on buying new one.

    In the interim, started walking 🏃*♀️To and from work, hour each way, then walking to gym each eve, 15 mins each way, plus got backpack 🎒 for shopping. Suddenly everything seemed doable (and more healthy 🙀) by foot, and I considered giving up my gym 💪🏋️*♂️membership. I was soooooo into the gym, so this was massive, but really honestly felt the walking 🏃*♀️💨was healthier, and saved me a whole lot 👛too of course.

    of course, trips to see family around the country, Devon, Somerset, Cambridge, meant trains, 🚂but I found that a whole lot more relaxing than motorway driving 👍, and have simply just adjusted. Easy when there’s only me to consider of course, totes different and impossible for most, but suits me currently, and blessed to have the legs and fitness to do it 🙏
    Peace is always beautiful.

    WALT WHITMAN
  • Nice response Bev

    Hi Nataly,

    Maybe if less travel options is a problem (/difficult for people living a bit further out) then a good way to help lower pollution is to improve public transport routes and accessibility?

    Think this will be quite slow considering that all the money (smart money UM) is being thrown at the BIG transport projects whilst the existing structures in some parts of the country need seriously upgrading.

    Transport such as buses etc can be really expensive - does this put you off?
    ​1) We live in ageing population so for lots the bus is really important
    2) I infrequently use the bus..but that may change with age..its on most peoples street corner and a necessity
    3) How do you move away from buses as a DD holds lots of passengers and not lots of road space v equivalent in cars?
    4) Calling for a driverless EV similar to renting town bike would be great but I think is way down the line?
    Last edited by Strutt G; 03-04-19 at 22:00.
    2
  • Nice response Bev

    Hi Nataly,

    Maybe if less travel options is a problem (/difficult for people living a bit further out) then a good way to help lower pollution is to improve public transport routes and accessibility?

    Think this will be quite slow considering that all the money (smart money UM) is being thrown at the BIG transport projects whilst the existing structures in some parts of the country need seriously upgrading.

    Transport such as buses etc can be really expensive - does this put you off?
    ​1) We live in ageing population so for lots the bus is really important
    2) I infrequently use the bus..but that may change with age..its on most peoples street corner and a necessity
    3) How do you move away from buses as a DD holds lots of passengers and not lots of road space v equivalent in cars?
    4) Calling for a driverless EV similar to renting town bike would be great but I think is way down the line?
  • Thanks for the great response @Bev - nice to read a real life example of how these big lifestyle changes can come about

    Also that making changes like that are great not just for the environment but also on our health and fitness @Skill is also really for this!

    Maybe you'd be interested in the PP Strava group? It's an app you can use to track your activity and find fun walking (as well as cycling, jogging etc) routes that other people use.

    @Strutt G really interesting response with great points raised... agreed that buses are key for many people, but maybe that means they'd use the bus anyway?

    If prices were lower (for example in Bristol it can cost £4.50 for what's ultimately a 15 min bus ride!) that might encourage those who would usually take the car to opt for public transport instead? Especially if there were pollution charges introd. for the cars. Though as you pointed out a lot of money is already going into other projects, which may mean this is a far-off dream

    Driverless EV's does seem like quite a long-term goal, but agreed it could be really great! Did you see that they're trialling electric autonomous buses in Singapore over the next few months?

    Plus, this will be tested out soon (2021 I believe) in London and Edinburgh... do you think that self-driving EV's is the best way forward (in an ideal world) then? With the introduction of pollution charges for cars as a solution in the meantime?
    Last edited by Nataly; 05-04-19 at 12:56.
    1
  • Thanks for the great response @Bev - nice to read a real life example of how these big lifestyle changes can come about

    Also that making changes like that are great not just for the environment but also on our health and fitness @Skill is also really for this!

    Maybe you'd be interested in the PP Strava group? It's an app you can use to track your activity and find fun walking (as well as cycling, jogging etc) routes that other people use.

    @Strutt G really interesting response with great points raised... agreed that buses are key for many people, but maybe that means they'd use the bus anyway?

    If prices were lower (for example in Bristol it can cost £4.50 for what's ultimately a 15 min bus ride!) that might encourage those who would usually take the car to opt for public transport instead? Especially if there were pollution charges introd. for the cars. Though as you pointed out a lot of money is already going into other projects, which may mean this is a far-off dream

    Driverless EV's does seem like quite a long-term goal, but agreed it could be really great! Did you see that they're trialling electric autonomous buses in Singapore over the next few months?

    Plus, this will be tested out soon (2021 I believe) in London and Edinburgh... do you think that self-driving EV's is the best way forward (in an ideal world) then? With the introduction of pollution charges for cars as a solution in the meantime?