Two public consultations will begin in October to gather views on key elements of plans for Greater Manchester’s Clean Air Zone, and new standards for taxis and private hire vehicles registered in the city-region.
People from across the region and beyond will be encouraged to have their say on Greater Manchester’s plans through the consultations, which will run from Thursday 8 October to Thursday 3 December 2020.
As there is significant overlap between Greater Manchester’s ambitious Clean Air Plan and the proposed emission standards in the taxi and private hire minimum licensing standards, the two consultations will run at the same time.
Government has instructed Greater Manchester to introduce a Category C class CAZ covering all 10 local authority areas to tackle harmful air pollution on our roads.
Lockdown led to an improvement in air quality across the city-region, a reduction in road traffic and an increase in cycling and walking journeys. Since the pandemic restrictions have been reduced and more vehicles have returned to the roads, the levels of air pollution quickly returned, with many sites being above legal limits across Greater Manchester.
The progressive Clean Air Plan demonstrates Greater Manchester’s commitment to building back better from the coronavirus pandemic and underpin a wider vision for the city region: building strong, safe and sustainable communities and places which provide people with a better quality of life.
The clean air consultation will ask for views on key elements of the CAZ including the zone’s proposed boundary, daily charges, discounts and exemptions, and request to government for a multi-million-pound funding package to support local businesses to upgrade to cleaner vehicles.
Government has already committed £41 million to support Greater Manchester businesses, sole traders and the voluntary sector to help upgrade to cleaner commercial vehicles ahead of the CAZ being introduced.
Leaders are also working with government to secure more than £100m in further financial support, as well as a proposed £10m Hardship Fund for those businesses and organisations most affected by the CAZ.
Further information on the proposals is available from the Clean Air GM website.