Hillingdon Council, one of the five Conservative-led councils challenging the ULEZ expansion, recently took to social media to express its stance on the matter.
In a tweet shared on their official account, the council emphasized the importance of improving air quality in areas with poorer air quality while expressing reservations about the ULEZ expansion as a solution.
Bexley, Bromley, Harrow, and Hillingdon, along with Surrey County Councils, launched legal action in February, opposing the proposed extension of ULEZ beyond the North and South Circular roads. The move has sparked a debate over the most effective measures to improve air quality in the capital.
The tweet from Hillingdon Council read, “Hillingdon has some of the best air quality in London. But there’s still more we can do to improve areas of poorer air quality to better protect residents. Expanding the ULEZ is not the answer, though.” The council’s message highlighted its commitment to tackling air pollution while suggesting alternative approaches to achieve cleaner air.
Accompanying the tweet was a graphic shared on the council’s social media channels, further explaining their position. According to the graphic, the council has consistently made improvements in air quality, with the majority of urban areas already meeting or exceeding legal pollution limits. However, the council acknowledged that there is still work to be done, particularly in addressing small particles that the ULEZ expansion may not effectively tackle. The council pledged to continue implementing measures aimed at further enhancing air quality for the benefit of its residents.
The council’s perspective adds to the ongoing debate surrounding the ULEZ expansion, which is set to impose a daily fee of £12.50 on drivers in outer London if their vehicles fail to meet the required emissions standards. While the ULEZ has been lauded for its positive impact on air quality in central London, concerns have been raised regarding its effectiveness in addressing pollution in the outskirts of the city.
Hillingdon has some of the best air quality in London.
But there's still more we can do to improve areas of poorer air quality to better protect residents. Expanding the ULEZ is not the answer, though. pic.twitter.com/tHTnI18rQG
— Hillingdon Council (@Hillingdon) May 20, 2023
The tweet from Hillingdon Council reflects a growing sentiment among some Conservative-led councils that alternative strategies should be explored to improve air quality. These councils argue that targeted measures tailored to the specific needs of different areas could be more effective in achieving cleaner air, rather than implementing a uniform expansion of the ULEZ.