The analysis of responses to Transport Scotland’s consultation ‘Building Scotland’s Low Emission Zones’ has now been published. The consultation asked key questions relating to the design of low emission zones (LEZ) in Scotland. The responses should help inform national standards for LEZ and the development of supporting legislation.
LEZ are a form of vehicle access regulation which sets an environmental limit on certain road spaces, to improve air quality by allowing access to only the cleanest vehicles, particularly at locations where there is public exposure. The Scottish Government has committed to introduce LEZs into Scotland’s four biggest cities between 2018 and 2020, and into all other Air Quality Management Areas by 2023, where the National Low Emissions Framework supports this approach.
In total, 967 responses were received. There was a high level of consensus among respondents with 95.5% supporting the principle of LEZs to help improve air quality in Scotland. In addition, 62.3% of respondents agreed with the proposed minimum mandatory Euro emission criteria for Scottish LEZs. The proposed minimum criteria as set out in the consultation document is Euro 6 for diesel cars, Euro 4 for petrol cars and Euro VI for buses (including older retrofitted engines which would be improved to operate as Euro VI).
The views provided showed that the most popular suggestion was for LEZs to operate 24 hours, seven days a week. The views provided also showed a high level of consensus with 91.6% in favour of using automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) to enforce LEZs. Those who disagreed had privacy concerns with the use of ANPR. 82.7% of respondents considered that emergency vehicles should be exempt. The majority of respondents, 86.3% agreed that LEZ exemptions should be consistent across all Scottish local authorities.
Source: Scottish Government News Release, 13 March 2018