Calls to reinstate the Ultra Low Emission Zone and Congestion Charge have been denied by the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, who has said the suspension of the charges will continue for at least another three weeks.
With the announcement that lockdown measures were being eased, with those who were not able to work from home encouraged to start heading back to work, London has seen an increase in congestion.
London Assembly Member and Green Party Parliamentary candidate for Islington North, Caroline Russell, stressed concerns over the possibility of the capital facing a new surge of pollution. Caroline Russell, said: “The Ultra Low Emission Zone and Congestion Charge were suspended at the height of the coronavirus outbreak in London when there was concern about key workers’ ability to get to work safely.
“However, with the push from Government to increase activity, especially construction and manufacturing businesses, I am concerned that London will face polluted gridlock again. “The Mayor must act now to reinstate the traffic and pollution-controlling ULEZ and CC to protect public health. Bringing these back would reinforce the urgent need to shift travel from motor traffic and public transport to walking and cycling along with the newly widened pavements and temporary bike lanes. “Walking and cycling are the only ways to travel that support safe social distancing and make our city fit for the future.”
But speaking to ITV London, Khan, said: “For the time being, we are not lifting the changes. But we will be reviewing that. The key thing is from Prime Minister - this road map in the medium to long-term. It gives us a route out of the lockdown.”