Drivers of eco-friendly vans working in or commuting to the capital will be delighted to hear that the greenest vans which satisfy strict emissions limits may soon be exempt from the London Congestion Charge.
Thus far any exemptions to the charge have been restricted solely to passenger cars. However, if Transport for London’s proposal is accepted, then as of 1 July 2013, the greenest vans will also be included in the list.
Transport for London proposes the replacement of the current Greener and Electric Vehicle Discount, which allows cars with sub-100g/km CO2 emissions to enter the zone free of charge. Despite the fact that the new ‘Ultra Low Emission Discount’ (ULED) regulations will be more stringent than the previous emissions limits, with the qualifying threshold falling to 75g/km, they will now apply to not only cars, but also vans under 3.5-tonnes as well as electric vehicles.
However, without wishing to rain on the green van drivers of the UK’s parade, we should probably warn you that a £10 registration fee for the ULED is still applicable. And not only that, following a bit of digging from the Van Compare team, we have also found that, aside from electric vans, the most eco-friendly van currently available is the Ford Fiesta Van Econetic, which with emissions of 87g/km, would still not be green enough to qualify for exemption under the new proposals!
Currently the Congestion Charge for entering central London is £10 a day, or £9 for drivers who have registered with an automated payment service. Due to the success of the automated payment option, with 220,000 people already having registered, Transport for London intends to scrap alternative options such as paying at shops and fuel stations, although drivers will still be able to pay online, by phone or by text.
Prior to the proposals to the Congestion Charge being accepted, they are subject to a 12-week public consultation period which has already been launched and will cease on 8 February 2013. The findings will then be reported to London Mayor, Boris Johnson, who will decide whether to proceed with the changes and if any amendments need to be made.
With the ongoing costs of running a vehicle so high, any savings which can be made will be music to the ears of green van drivers who frequently travel through the centre of London. Further savings can be made by finding the right van insurance policy. For that, you need Van Compare.
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