There’s only one month to go until Bristol’s Clean Air Zone launches on November 28 – with older and more polluting vehicles charged to drive into a central area of the city.
The measure comes as Bristol City Council is legally required to cut harmful air pollution levels in the city centre.
Drivers in Bristol will start to see Clean Air Zone signs appearing at the side of the road in preparation – these have a green cloud symbol on with the words ‘CAZ D’ inside.
Once the zone is operating, daily charges will apply 24 hours a day (midnight to midnight), seven days a week, all year round when entering or driving in the zone.
All residents and businesses are being urged to check their vehicles using the Government’s online vehicle checker.
Which vehicles will be charged?
Most diesel vehicles with new registrations after September 1, 2015 and petrol or LPG vehicles registered after September 1, 2006 won’t be charged.
There are also exemptions for Gas Euro (VI) standard or better vehicles and fully or hybrid electric vehicles as well as motorcycles.
Non compliant smaller vehicles, including private cars and taxis, will be charged £9 to enter the Zone and Heavy Goods Vehicles, coaches and buses £100.
Bristol City Council estimates over 71% of vehicles in Bristol are already Clean Air Zone compliant and will not be charged.
But the local authority expects this figure to rise following the launch of the Zone, much like Birmingham City Council, which introduced a CAZ D in June 2021. Other UK cities which currently have a CAZ are Bath and Portsmouth.
Where does the CAZ cover?
The Zone will cover the city centre and extend to The Portway along with Cumberland Basin which are major routes in and out of Bristol.
To the south of the city the border will fall just above Greville Smyth Park, down Frayne Road and then up Coronation Road. It will also continue down York Road and will also cover Bath Road to the junction with Wells Road.
To the East it will include Temple Gate and Approach Road to Temple Meads Station, continuing up Temple Way.
For a detailed map covering the whole CAZ visit:https://www.cleanairforbristol.org/caz/
Financial support and grants
Mayor of Bristol Marvin Rees said: “We are committed to reducing air pollution in Bristol and continue to offer people support to consider alternative, more sustainable ways of travelling in our city. We want Bristol to be a healthier place for everyone to grow up, live and work, but recognise that this comes with challenges.
“We’ve been able to secure financial support of £42m from government for people and businesses to use, but now Bristolians need to make sure they’re getting ready. I want to remind people that there are several types of support which are open for applications before the Clean Air Zone launches in four weeks’ time.”
Temporary exemptions are still available to eligible people, to give them more time to change or upgrade their vehicle. Grants and loans are available to apply for via the council’s website, which can be used to change or upgrade vehicles.
Free active travel offers are available for people in Bristol to try out sustainable ways of travelling. Anyone who lives or works in Bristol is eligible to receive these offers and can apply on the council website.
Charges must be paid within six days via www.gov.uk/clean-air-zones or by calling the Clean Air Zone support line on 0300 029 8888 (Monday to Friday: 8am to 7pm, Saturday: 8am to 2pm). Users of smart phones can also pay the charge using free-to-use apps like Caura, but always make sure platforms are trustworthy before entering any personal payment information.
People will not receive written notification or any kind of alert that they have entered Bristol’s Clean Air Zone or that a payment is due.
Business owners can sign up to the Business Accounts Feature, to set up a Bristol-specific account to help manage payment for multiple vehicles entering and exiting the Zone.
If Clean Air Zone charges are not paid on time, people may be issued with a Penalty Charge Notice of £120, which is reduced to £60 if it is paid within 14 days.
For more information on available financial support, visit: https://www.bristol.gov.uk/residents/streets-travel/bristols-caz/financial-support
For information about exemptions, visit: https://www.bristol.gov.uk/residents/streets-travel/bristols-caz/exemptions