Tuesday, February 12, 2008

London's New Congestion Pricing - A breath of fresh air?

Photo courtesy of Team Crandall.
London Mayor Ken Livingstone first proposed a higher congestion surcharge based on a vehicle's CO2 emissions in 2006. Today the formal proposal was announced by Transport for London. Some of the key points include no fees for vehicles that emit less than 120g/km of CO2 and an extra £25 charge for vehicles that pollute more than 225g/km of CO2 or have engines over specified sizes. Smart cars are in! SUVs are out.

The BBC reports that the National Alliance Against Tolls responded, "This move is not based on logic but on the whipping up of prejudices against those who use these particular vehicles." The Tory candidate for London Mayor, Boris Johnson, said, "In effect, the mayor has just given the green light for richer people to buy smaller cars and enter the zone for free while families who struggle with one big car are left feeling the pinch."

Environmental groups applaud the action, naturally.

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