Air quality creative

Cleaning up London's air

Every year, over 9,000 Londoners are dying prematurely from long-term exposure to air pollution and our latest research shows that hundreds of schools are located in areas exceeding safe legal pollution levels.

Mayor Sadiq Khan is implementing tough measures to reduce London's deadly air pollution and protect the health and wellbeing of all Londoners.

Here's how we're taking action:

Toxicity Charge (T-Charge)

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From October 2017, a £10 toxicity charge or T-Charge will apply to the oldest and most polluting vehicles in Central London.

Drivers will be paying £21.50 total during peak congestion, so the message here is clear - polluting vehicles aren't welcome.

TfL and the Mayor have also launched a free online vehicle checker - so you can check if your vehicle will be charged.

Ultra Low Emission Zone

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The world’s first Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) is proposed to start as early as 2019 - superseeding the T-charge and creating stricter emissions standards for diesel vehicles, 24 hours, 7 days a week. Those that do not comply will face a charge.

This is expected to reduce harmful NOx (Nitrogen Oxides) emissions by about 50 per cent in central London, 40 per cent in inner London and 30 per cent in outer London.

London's buses

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The Mayor is spending more than £300m to transform London’s bus fleet by retrofitting thousands of buses and committing to phase out pure diesel double deck buses from 2018.

We have announced 12 Low Emission Bus Zones, putting the greenest buses on the capital’s most polluted routes, with the first located in Putney High Street and Brixton Road.

The zones are expected to reduce NOx emissions by 84 per cent and thousands of schools children in these areas will benefit from cleaner air.

Clean Vehicle Checker

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London and Paris will be launching a new vehicle scoring scheme to help reduce the number of polluting vehicles in their cities.

The Cleaner Vehicle Checker will show Londoners how much toxic NOx new cars emit, helping them to choose and buy less polluting vehicles.

It will also strongly encourage manufacturers to build cleaner vehicles sooner.


Protecting schools from pollution

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At the beginning of the year, Mayor Sadiq Khan announced plans to protect London's schools from pollution.

50 'air quality' audits will take place at primary schools in areas exceeding legal limits of nitrogen dioxide (NO2). And ideas to lower emissions and exposure will be put forward.

Boroughs will then work with schools to implement changes (using £1billion from the Mayor).


What else is happening

We've only just begun - there are various initiatives we're using to tackle London's air quality, including:


We’re also working to reduce pollution from transport, buildings and developments by:

Free pollution alerts

You can sign up for pollution alerts in your area via Twitter and the airTEXT website.

Working with others

We work closely with London boroughs to support and coordinate local action on air pollution.

We also work with national government to ask for support and policies to help improve air pollution in London. See our response to Defra’s National NO2 plan.

We work with universities and others to improve understanding and awareness of air pollution. This includes a ground-breaking study on the health impacts of NO2.