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TAXI FUNDING: Support fund REOPENS to help Glasgow residents and businesses comply with LEZ

The LEZ Support Fund, designed to assist households and small businesses in preparing for Low Emission Zones (LEZs) in Scotland, has reopened for new applications, providing financial support for sustainable travel options.

Glasgow City Council (GCC) expressed their gratitude for the funding provided by the Scottish Government and administered by Energy Saving Trust, which aims to incentivise the adoption of cleaner transport alternatives.

The LEZ Support Fund offers a means-tested program and a financial support package to households and micro-businesses, including taxi drivers, encouraging the use of sustainable travel options. With a grant of £2,000 provided, the fund aims to incentivise the disposal of vehicles that do not meet LEZ requirements. Additionally, mobility grants or Travel Better credits of up to £1,000 are available to assist in the purchase of bikes, e-bikes, or public transport vouchers.

The LEZ Retrofit Fund specifically targets micro-businesses, offering grants of up to 70% to cover the costs of retrofitting vehicles to meet LEZ requirements. Sole traders and micro-business owners can apply for funding to retrofit up to three vehicles.

Glasgow's LEZ was implemented on 1 June 2023, joining numerous cities across Europe in their efforts to ensure cleaner and safer air quality. By excluding the most polluting vehicles from the city centre, the scheme aims to tackle high levels of harmful air pollution.

To enter Glasgow's LEZ, all vehicles must meet the less-polluting emission standards; otherwise, a penalty charge will be imposed. Certain exemptions, such as for blue badge holders, are in place, and zone residents have until June of next year to adapt to the requirements.

It is worth noting that the majority of vehicles currently entering the city centre, up to 90%, already comply with the LEZ standards. However, the focus remains on addressing the most polluting vehicles that significantly contribute to the harmful concentrations of air pollution.

The reopening of the LEZ Support Fund provides a valuable opportunity for Glasgow residents and businesses to play their part in creating a healthier environment and reducing air pollution levels in the city.

GCC City Convener for Climate and Transport, Cllr Angus Millar, said: "I'm pleased that the Scottish Government and Energy Saving Trust's LEZ Support Fund has reopened and can continue, as it has in previous years, to help eligible households, smaller businesses and sole traders to travel more sustainably and meet the required LEZ air quality standards.

"With £5m available this year, the fund will support the transition to LEZ compliance and more breathable air for all of us.

"Over the last four years, around £4m has been awarded to eligible households and smaller business in the Glasgow region, whilst £1.4m has been paid out for taxi retrofits - with public hire taxi operators in the city now either LEZ compliant or subject to an exemption until next year to allow extra time to achieve compliance.

"I would encourage households and businesses to check their eligibility to see if they can take advantage of this year's funding availability."


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