November 4th will be the date from which higher polluting vehicles will be charged to drive in Bath’s Clean Air Zone (CAZ) – that’s if the final business case for the zone is approved by Bath & North East Somerset Council’s cabinet members.
The switch-on date has been set out in a timeline of works to install the clean air zone which will see charges of £100 per day for higher emission buses, coaches and HGVs, and £9 per day for higher emission taxis, private hire vehicles, minibuses, LGVs and vans to drive in the zone. Private cars and motorbikes will not be charged, regardless of their emissions.
A report before cabinet, which meets on January 16, recommends that the council’s full business case for the zone is submitted to the Government’s Joint Air Quality Unit (JAQU) for final approval. This sets out the details of the charging zone, taking into account feedback from the latest public consultation, including its boundary and the charges, concessions, exemptions and payment policies which will apply. It also sets out a timetable for the zone’s installation, including the switch-on date of 4 November.
Councillor Dine Romero, leader, said: “Tackling pollution is a priority for us if we’re to improve people’s lives and address the climate emergency. A great deal of work has gone in to getting to this point, and I want to thank everyone who took part in our consultations and had their say. This has been a complex process and I’m pleased that the final business case, going before government, strikes a balance for the city, its residents and businesses. This is of course the first step in our ambition to make Bath cleaner and greener for everyone.”
If approved, the council hopes that the government will sign off the programme by 14 February. The council will then focus on encouraging the uptake of the financial assistance scheme among local businesses and individuals affected by charges to upgrade their vehicles. It will also start installing the necessary signage, cameras and infrastructure required for switch-on.
Councillor Sarah Warren, cabinet member for Climate Emergency and Neighbourhood Services, said “While this is a significant step towards clean air, there’s more to do to encourage everyone to consider the ways that they get around the city. I want to see better facilities for walking, cycling and public transport that will allow us to tackle carbon emissions and congestion, as well as air pollution, across the whole of Bath & North East Somerset.’
The final business case for Bath’s clean air zone goes before the cabinet on 16 January. Follow the link below to read the report and visit www.bathnes.gov.uk/CAZFBC to see the full business case reports https://democracy.bathnes.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=122&MId=5556
Full details of the scheme, including the financial assistance scheme, is available at www.bathnes.gov.uk/breathe.