The indefatigable London mayor, Ken Livingstone, has just inaugurated a low emission zone (LEZ) scheme. It establishes stinging fees – £200 per trip – for high-polluting vehicles’ privilege of driving within Greater London. The heaviest lorries are subject to restrictions effective today, while other lorries, buses, coaches, minibuses and large vans will be phased in over the next four years.
For newer vehicles that satisfy Euro III emission standards the fees are waived (the standard goes to Euro IV in January 2012). The owners of older vehicles will have to clean their engines if they want to avoid the penalties.
For any expatriate that may be concerned with this, cars and motorcycles are exempt. Although, if you are relocating, you may be on the hook from your moving company for the extra couple of hundred quid if their lorry does not meet emission standards.
Information about LEZ can be found on Transport for London website.