Image above: London Mayor Sadiq Khan
Pressure Grows on City Hall from Labour following Uxbridge and South Ruislip by-election
Sadiq Khan says he is still be committed to expanding the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ), but is thought to be considering new ideas for ways to mitigate the financial impact on Londoners after Labour lost the Uxbridge and South Ruislip by-election last Thursday (20 July)
The London mayor is understood to be willing to consider measures as long as they do not reduce the policy’s effectiveness at improving air quality.
Mr Khan’s plans to expand Ulez to encompass the outer boroughs of London from 29 August have been blamed for Labour failing to take Boris Johnson’s old seat.
The change means drivers across the capital will face a £12.50 daily charge unless their car meets stringent emissions rules.
Image above: Map of Ulez expansion
Mayor is “listening to Londoners”
A source close to the Labour mayor told Sky News:
“Sadiq has been clear he is listening to Londoners following this by-election.”
Labour Leader Keir Starmer blamed Labour’s failure to win the Uxbridge and South Ruislip by-election on the Mayor’s flagship policy and said he should ‘reflect’ on it.
Critics argue the scheme disproportionately affects poorer people who need to drive for work and discourages sole traders from outside London taking work inside the city.
Mr Khan’s team defended his Ulez plan, saying only one out of ten cars driving in outer London would face the charge, with a £110m scrappage scheme to help lower earners upgrade their vehicles.
London has the highest percentage of deaths attributable to particulate air pollution of all English regions (7.1 per cent) with an estimated 4,000 deaths caused by air pollution each year.