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Glasgow Drivers Fear Low Emission Zone Fines

Co-written by Derek Lewis

Around 147,000 people commute to work in Glasgow every day many of whom will be affected by the LEZ.. (Image by Derek Lewis).

City centre drivers of non-compliant vehicles face fines of up to £60 per day from June 1st 2023

The way many commuters travel in and around Glasgow city centre is set to change this summer as the Glasgow City Centre Low Emissions Zone (LEZ) comes into force on the 1st of June.

Cameras will use number plate recognition software to detect non-compliant vehicles entering the low emissions zone LEZ, automatically issuing £60 fines.

Usman, a 30-year-old Uber driver who often works within Glasgow City Centre, stated that his income is heavily depends on weekend revellers;

“The emission zone is full of bars and clubs…I won't be able to cash in on those days. Most Friday’s nights I make more than Mondays and Tuesdays combined.”

Drivers of Euro 4 petrol and Euro 6 diesel vehicles will comply with the new regulations, but drivers of petrol and diesel vehicles manufactured before 2006 and 2015, respectively, will be prohibited from entering the new zones.

LEZ Phase 1 was introduced in 2018, and only applies to local bus services. Phase 2 was launched in May 2022, with a one-year grace period (during which the LEZ will not be enforced) to allow drivers time to check if their vehicles comply with LEZ requirements.

Vehicles registered at a residential address within the LEZ will be allowed until the 1st of June 2024 to meet emissions standards.

All vehicles entering the city centre zone area will need to meet the less-polluting emission standards or face a penalty charge. credit Glasgow City Council.

The LEZ covers the area of the city centre bounded by the M8 motorway to the north and west, the River Clyde to the south and High Street/Saltmarket to the east. (Illustration credit – Low Emission Zones Scotland)

The Scotman reports approximately 323,000 people come to work in Glasgow every day, with around 50% of these individuals commuting by car or van. Vehicles entering the LEZ will have to adhere to the lower emission limits or risk being fined.

Many taxi drivers in the city fear the LEZ will put them out of business. (Image by Derek Lewis).

Environmentalists maintain the LEZ will improve air quality in the City Centre. The example of the London LEZ and ULEZ (Ultra Low Emissions Zone) which have been in force for over 14 years. Reports now show that over four million people in London now benefit from cleaner air.

Stephen Kelly, a 45 year old barber shop owner, supported the LEZ claiming,

“ I’ve been working in the same shop for the last 25 years and have first hand experience of the rising traffic and air pollution in the city centre. I think it (the LEZ) will improve the air quality.”

Check if your vehicle meets LEZ emissions standards by clicking on this link.


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