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Clean Air Zones

Posted on by Matt Drohan

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CAZ (Clean Air Zones) are areas in the UK where the government have or are planning to implement a scheme to reduce the amount of air pollution within the area. Most commonly these are within city centres, where pollution levels are at their highest.

Most modern vehicles will be exempt from CAZ charges. All vehicles that comply with the recent emission standards known as Euro 4, 5 and 6 will be exempt, these include;

1. Petrol cars meeting the Euro 4 standard or later

2. Diesel cars that meet harder Euro 6 standard

3. Electric Vehicles

Five Mandatory clean air zones

There are five mandated cities by the government to deploy Clean Air Zones, these are Nottingham, Derby, Southampton, Birmingham and Leeds.


London has coined its zone the ULEZ (ultra-low emission zone). This zone took affect as of April 2019 and currently only the very centre of London, however there are plans for this to varsity expand.

See the TFL website for detailed map


The Birmingham Clean Air Zone will take affect from 2020 and will affect all vehicles failing to meet minimum emission standards and will charge from £6 to £12.50 for non-compliant cars and from £50 to £100 for Lorries and buses.

For more information and details visits the Birmingham city council website


The Leeds Clean Air Zone is planned to start as of January 6th 2020 and will affect buses, Lorries and minicabs that don’t meet minimum emission standards.

This will charge £12.50 for taxis and £50 for Lorries coaches and buses.


Nottingham will not be implementing a CAZ that charges drivers, instead it will tackle air pollution through fitting busses with technology to reduce emissions and changing the age and emission policy on hackney carriages.


Instead of a CAZ that charges driver’s, derby is proposing traffic management measures to address air quality issues.


Instead of a CAZ that charges drivers, Southampton are making measures that include shore side power and preferential charging of port HGV, Introduction of traffic regulation that will make sure buses meet emission standard and taxis licensing will be revised to remove the most polluting vehicles. 

Other Cities


Low emission zone planned for 2020.

The Aberdeen CAZ will affect buses and Lorries failing to meet minimum emission standards.

Bath and North East Somerset

The Bath and North East Somerset is planned for 2020.

It will affect all vehicles that do not meet the minimum emission standard. Also private hire vehicles will be charged £9 for non-compliant vans and taxis and £100 for Lorries buses.

Drivers of older cars could benefit from scrappage scheme where they could gain up to £2000 to upgrade to cleaner vehicles.


Bristol has announced it will ban all private diesel vehicles from the very centre of the city by 2021. Also a wider clean air zone will be implemented. However the charges are yet to be decided.


Cambridge city council to examine options in 2020 and is currently unknown what vehicle will be affected.


Feasibility study currently in progress.


Planned for 2020 and will affect all vehicles failing to meet minimum emission standards.


Planned for 2020 and will affect all vehicles failing to meet minimum emission standards.


A low emission zone is currently being considered for all vehicles that fail to meet minimum emission standards.


Low emission zone is to be phased in as of December 2018 with it affecting local services and buses and by 31 December 2022 it will be fully implemented and affect all vehicles entering the zone that do not meet specified exhaust emission standards.


Proposed for 2021 and will affect non-compliant Lorries and taxis. Also from 2023 clean air zone changes will mean vans will be charged be £7.50 a day and £100 for Lorries and buses.


Proposed for 2021 and will definitely affect buses, Lorries and taxis and potentially cars and vans.


Proposed Zero Emission Zone, in the very centre of Oxford where all Diesel and Petrol cars will be banned from 7am to 7pm, a £10 charge will be in place for drivers who drive in the ZEZ, with discounts until 2030 for businesses and people who live within the zone.

Also a larger low emission zone is proposed to charge high emission vehicles. Consultation for these plans to run in January 2020, with a proposed deployment of December 2020.


Undecided, consideration and currently undecided what vehicles it will affect.


Planned for 2020/2021 with Lorries, buses, taxis and vans that don’t meet minimum emission standards. The proposal suggests £10 per day for vans and taxis with Lorries and buses £50 per day.


Proposed for 2020 and will affect buses failing to meet minimum emission requirements.

For a full details see the BVRLA interactive map bellow.

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