The scheme has been replaced by non-charging measures which, the council says, will bring air quality levels to within legal limits before 2020.

The move comes after a consultation process which ‘received an unprecedented response’.

Southampton City Council has published its Proposed Business Case to deliver compliance with the EU limit value for nitrogen dioxide by 2020, without the need for a charging zone.

The report shows that has decreased

‘Dedicated work with partners’ has reduced nitrogen dioxide pollution over the last three years by 24% in some of the most polluted areas.

The council shows that £15M worth of projects included introducing cleaner city buses assisted by £2.7M secured from the Government’s clean bus technology fund; a low emission taxi incentive scheme; introduction of cleaner fuels and equipment at Southampton’s port; and investing £3.9M in our cycling infrastructure, have all been successful in reducing nitrogen dioxide in the city.

Within the report, a case has been put forward to introduce further measures to ensure compliance even earlier than 2020.

Some examples of these measures include:

  • Port measures - including shoreside power and preferential charging of the port HGV booking scheme
  • HGVs - Offering opportunities for businesses to assess and trial freight consolidation, thereby removing HGV trips in the city, and an accreditation scheme for HGV operators so businesses can identify those operators that are least polluting
  • Buses - Introduction of a Traffic Regulation Condition that will ensure all operating buses meet the highest emission standard
  • Taxis - Revising taxi licensing conditions to remove the most polluting vehicles, expanding the existing low emission taxi scheme to support more operators, and offering a ‘try before you buy scheme’ for operators to experience the benefits of an electric taxi for up to 3 months

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