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As a London MP, the expansion of the ULEZ will affect people and businesses across your constituency. There has been increasing local concern around the impact of air pollution, particularly the threat posed by local hotspots.
Legal limits for nitrogen dioxide (NO2), which should have been met by 2010, are still being breached across the UK. London has the worst levels in the country at almost two times over the legal limit (an annual mean of 40 micrograms per cubic metre (µg/m3)).
Continuing levels of illegal air pollution is locking in health inequalities and future strain on the NHS. Taking action would not only have public health benefits as research from the Confederation of British Industry has shown that cleaner air could boost the UK economy by £1.6 billion per year and provide an economic benefit of almost £500 million per year to London’s local economy.
The Mayor of London has a responsibility to take action, alongside the UK Government, and whilst there is no silver bullet, the ULEZ is key to tackling the key source of illegal levels of NO2 – road transport, and in particular diesel vehicles.
The first stage of the ULEZ was launched in April 2019 and covers central London (i.e. the same area as the London Congestion Charge Zone). However, analysis showed that more action is needed to meet legal limits for NO2 in the shortest time possible. The Mayor of London has proposed, after substantial public consultation, that the ULEZ will be expanded on 25 October 2021 up to, but not including, the North and South Circular Roads. This will make the expanded ULEZ 18 times bigger than the current zone.