Coventry ordered to implement clean air zone

By William Eichler | 17 May 2019

Coventry City Council has accused the Government of using ‘heavy handed’ tactics after it was ordered to implement a clean air zone.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) rejected the council’s £83m plan to improve air quality in the city by promoting electric vehicles, and walking and cycling routes.

Defra has, instead, insisted that Coventry introduces a charging clean air zone (CAZ), which will require drivers of high-polluting vehicles, such as buses, lorries and older cars, to pay a charge.

Cabinet member for jobs and regeneration, Cllr Jim O’Boyle, said: ‘There’s no point using heavy handed tactics without any clear rationale.

‘Our local plan is all evidence-based, we can demonstrate that we can reduce nitrogen oxide levels in the areas of the most concern and I can’t see how a charging zone would reduce emissions any quicker.

‘They are asking us to make every arterial road in the city part of a charging zone and that’s completely unacceptable.'

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