Bristol to ban all diesel cars from 2021

Published 31 October 2019

Bristol will ban all diesel cars from 2021, under proposals being put forward by the city’s council.

Diesel cars will be banned from parts of the city centre between 7am and 3pm, while a charging zone for non-compliant commercial vehicles such as buses, taxis, HGVs would also be introduced.

Bristol is one of 24 areas in the UK that have been ordered by the Government to come up with clean air plans by March 2021.

“These ambitious plans demonstrate our commitment to tackling air pollution so we meet legal limits within the shortest time, without disproportionally affecting citizens on lower incomes, which would happen with a blanket approach to charging vehicles,” said Marvin Rees, the mayor of Bristol.

“Protecting the most vulnerable people from pollution is central to these plans and we have ensured that all impacts have been carefully considered. If approved, mitigation measures will support those most affected, especially those living in the most deprived communities.”

The proposal could be approved on 5 November, when the council’s cabinet meets to discuss the clean air plan.

In April 2019 Transport for London (TfL) introduced the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) to reduce the levels of particulate matter and nitrogen oxides in the city’s air. Since its introduction, the ULEZ has raised TfL over £40 million in fees and charges.

Birmingham is expected to launch its own clean air zone in 2021, with drivers being charged £8 per day to enter parts of the city centre. 


   on 1 November 2019

Interesting (and ill informed) policy, this article by fleet news suggests that a switch to petrol vehicles may not deliver the desired long term air quality improvements, as some of the latest diesel cars tested actually produce lower Nox emissions than their petrol counterparts.... (in addition to the lower carbon dioxide emissions that has always been their benefit)

Note the Mercedes they tested producing 15mg of Nox per km vs the petrol car average of 36mg/km

Engineer Andy    on 1 November 2019

So you can't go to work in a diesel in Bristol, but you can go home in one. Class. Why do I think this is more of a revenue-raising and a virtue-signalling exercise.

It'll REALLY go down well with motorists, especially those that just bought a Euro6 diesel thinking they'd be allowed in like in London. A real vote winner - with naive students.

Edited by Avant on 03/11/2019 at 00:02

   on 1 November 2019

Ridiculous agenda led none scientific policy. This means you will still be banned if you drive a hybrid diesel car through the city even if you only use your electric motor and thus without producing any emissions at all. Mercedes are one car maker that produce these cars and there might be others doing the same or intending to.

gavsmit    on 2 November 2019

I'd be seriously worried if I lived and worked in Bristol on a low income and commuted via a diesel car that was once described as more environmentally friendly by politicians who awarded them low road fund licence for emitting low levels of CO2.

How about these ridiculous politicians / councils be a lot more understanding to the people paying their wages and working hard to bolster the economies of these places by at least giving them a bit more time than just over a year to save up for a less polluting form of transport? Or implement improvements and safer ways to get about on public transport or a bicycle (having driven through a gridlocked Bristol recently, it's not something I'd want to do often).

No wonder so many town centres and high streets are dying. Well done naïve / incompetent politicians / councillors knee-jerking to fashionable political trends rather than realism as usual.

DLDLDL    on 2 November 2019

But is this yet another example of Central Government passing edicts:

Bristol is one of 24 areas in the UK that have been ordered by the Government to come up with clean air plans by March 2021.

but not willing the means and just leaving it up to local authorities to "solve the problem"?

How can local authorities which are more cash strapped than ever, subject to more edicts than ever, not just come up with a clean air plan, but be able to implement one which does clean up the air?

I do presume that most readers accept that on some streets in these areas the air quality is unacceptable and a threat to health particularly of the young and the old.

Car manufacturers are trying (honestly or not) to clean up their acts, so they present a moving target but we own cars for a number of years and are concerned either about their resale value in a few years or their legislative acceptability in a few years. This is not an issue for "local government" to solve.

Edited by DLDLDL on 02/11/2019 at 16:52

gordonbennet    on 3 November 2019

Bristol High St businesses will be the big loser here, Amazon will win big time.

Engineer Andy    on 3 November 2019

Bristol High St businesses will be the big loser here, Amazon will win big time.

Followed soon by every other big city. Well, at least we'll have lots of take-aways, Pound shops and charity shops to choose from when the big name retailers disappear.

Edited by Engineer Andy on 03/11/2019 at 19:59

Paul G Hammond    on 4 November 2019

I'm sure they will have to reverse this policy, or Bristol will be dead in the water!

Edited by Paul G Hammond on 04/11/2019 at 15:19

Alex Girvan    on 4 November 2019

Honestly, what a poor thought out knee jerk plan!! Yet again, lack of power charging points and electric car prices that the majority of the population can't afford.

Brian Mullis    on 4 November 2019

On the rare occasion I drive north up the M5, I am often obliged to drive from my home in South Somerset, through central Bristol to get to the M32, M4 & M5.

Will other arrangements be made for such thorough traffic, or do we have to go around the houses, e.g. via toll bridge at Bathampton?

sixcylinder    on 4 November 2019

Do Bristol Councillors subscribe to the well known scientific rule, "don't confuse me with scientific facts about the latest diesel car emissions I've made my non-scientific mind up".?

Stripey Badger    on 4 November 2019

On what independent scientific investigations are these regulations based and how up to date are they? Can the citizen view them?

When government claims to improve the lives of its citizens it is simply increasing control over them.

Edited by Stripey Badger on 04/11/2019 at 17:05

c Reed    on 4 November 2019

Who the heck would want to visit Bristol?
Its bad enough trying to get to their pathtic airport.

c Reed    on 4 November 2019

Who the heck would want to visit Bristol?
Its bad enough trying to get to their pathtic airport

Andrew Greening    on 5 November 2019

Good , one more dump I won't have to drive to in a truck so the populace can starve

R L Nunn    on 5 November 2019

So what happens when the M5 is blocked by an accident and you get redirected through Bristol? How will they know the extra traffic didn't want to go through their clean air zone? Why are they going to charge HGV's and not buses (which are also diesels)? As usual woolly headed ideas with no foundation in reality

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