Ultra Low Emission Zone area, price, hours
London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone that charges drivers to bring older, more polluting, vehicles into the city centre has been amongst the initiatives that make 60% ‘willing to purchase’ more eco-friendly, fully electric, alternatives since its launch in April 2019, Nissan’s survey implies. The purpose of the Zone is to:
- Reduce the number of heavily polluting vehicles in the city
- Encourage motorists to switch to eco-friendly models
- Minimise the number of people that suffer from health complaints caused by poor air quality, e.g. breathing issues
The Zone is enforced 24 hours a day 365 days a year. It also operates within the Congestion Charge Zone. The cost is £12.50 per day for a car. Despite the expense, the survey suggests drivers widely support such initiatives. Further findings include:
- 43% ‘more likely’ to swap to electric vehicles if there are financial incentives, e.g. not having to pay emission charges
- 35% (outside London) claim that their closest city ‘would benefit’ from an Ultra Low Emission Zone
- 27% ‘more likely’ to go electric if there is widespread implementation of Ultra Low Emission Zones
- 25% ‘worried’ that poor air quality is impeding their health
- 40% have ‘more breathing issues’ in cities than rural areas
- 60% think that poor air quality is the ‘most dangerous long term health concern’ for people that live in cities
Nissan Interim Managing Director, Andrew Sellars, says: ‘It is clear that as the UK continues to implement its Road to Zero strategy - which will see at least half of all new cars sold being ultra low emission models by 2030 - citizens are taking a more active interest in the benefits of electric vehicles. Such cars contribute strongly to improving air quality in cities’, he claims.
Airport-style electric car forecourts
Drivers that might be tempted to swap to eco-friendly, fully electric, cars can be put off by certain restrictions. There is very little charging infrastructure, for example. This makes it tricky to recharge in the middle of a journey which increases stress. However, there are various companies addressing this issue.
Note Gridserve, for instance. Its £1 billion plan is to create a network of 100+ electric forecourts that are comfortable, convenient, and practical. Expect ultra fast chargers for private cars plus fleet vehicles such as taxis, buses, vans, and heavy goods. Furthermore, drivers look set to pass the time while their vehicles charge in airport-style lounges. Planned features include:
- Coffee shops
- Fresh food
- High speed internet
Founder and Chief Executive, Toddington Harper, says: ‘We plan to make charging electric vehicles as easy as using petrol stations. The latest generation of electric vehicle is awesome – and ready for mainstream adoption – but drivers still worry about if or where they can charge, how long it will take, and how much it will cost.’
‘We plan to eliminate any range or charging anxiety by building a UK-wide network of customer focussed, brand new, electric forecourts that will make it easier and cheaper to use an electric vehicle than a petrol or diesel alternative’, Mr Harper concludes.