Owners of private cars, taxis and vans that do not meet the requirements will have to pay £8 a day to enter the Birmingham Clean Air Zone from 1 January 2020 onwards, the city council has announced.

The CAZ will cover all roads within the A4540 Middleway ring road. Post-Euro 4 petrol vehicles and post-Euro 6 diesels will be allowed to enter the zone for free, the council said.

However, a number of exemptions will be included, subject to the council receiving £68.7m from the central Government.

  • One-year exemptions for commercial vehicles such as coaches, vans and lorries registered within the zone. The exemption will only apply to two vehicles per company.
  • One-year exemptions for coaches, vans and lorries registered in the Birmingham area and travelling into the zone which have an existing finance agreement beyond 2020. Similarly, this will only apply to two vehicles per business.
  • Two-year exemptions for individuals with non-compliant vehicles registered inside the zone.
  • One-year exemptions to people with non-compliant vehicles who work within the zone and also satisfy the income threshold of £30,000 per year living within the CAZ and £20,000 living outside the restricted area.
  • A one-year exemption for visitors to health services such as Birmingham Children’s Hospital.
  • Permanent exemptions for vans and minibuses providing ‘essential’ community and school transport services.

Emissions

“We are under no illusions that air pollution represents a major public health crisis in Birmingham, so we have worked long and hard to put together proposals for the Clean Air Zone that we believe is required to deliver long-term health benefits to the city,” said Waseem Zaffar, cabinet member for transport and environment at Birmingham City Council.“At the same time, we fully recognise that these proposals will impact on individuals and businesses across the city and the wider West Midlands area, so we are now calling on the Government to provide the funding needed to help us support these people. However, it is important to remember that a Clean Air Zone is just part of a much bigger picture. We all have a part to play and, as a city, we need to continue working together to ensure that our children, their children and future generations to come have access to clean air in our city.”