The mother of a nine-year-old girl who passed away after being exposed to London’s traffic has welcomed the expansion of the ultra-low emission zone (Ulez), but she is worried about how it will affect the less fortunate.
Ella Adoo-Kissi-Debrah passed away in 2013 following an asthma attack, becoming the first person in the UK to have air pollution listed as a cause of death during an inquest.
Since Ella’s passing, her mother Rosamund has fought for cleaner air in UK cities and is a fervent advocate for the Ulez expansion. She said Tuesday was “a good day for everyone,” but added that “individual things need to be looked at.”
It will be “really harsh” for certain people, she claimed, and it is “not right” that late-shift caregivers who make less money might have to pay Ulez twice.
Drivers in the zone who operate non-compliant vehicles must now pay a £12.50 daily fee or risk a £180 fine, which is lowered to £90 if paid within 14 days.
Rosamund Adoo-Kissi-Debrah and London Mayor Sadiq Khan / PA Wire
Ms. Adoo-Kissi-Debrah, a Lewisham resident, responded to a question regarding expense worries by saying, “I’m not in charge of the scheme, but whatever plan you bring in, there are teething problems, and also I’d like to think all blue badge holders can now access the scrappage scheme. Once more, if they don’t, they should get in touch with the mayor’s office.
There will always be those who are negatively impacted by any plan, so we need to reduce it as much as we can.Can I thank the people of outer London though? I learned yesterday that 702,000 of them will have compliant cars by November 2022, which is incredible and proves that people are actually in favor of it.
“Unfortunately, cleaning up the air does cost money, and this isn’t a partisan issue; we need the government to chip in because the more money there is in the scrappage scheme, the more people you can get in.”Of course I’m worried because we don’t want the poorest to suffer, but to speak to those people who are extremely poor, who don’t even own a car, who are on the main roads waiting for buses, I hope in time they will also have cleaner air since they don’t even own a car and yet they are negatively impacted.
Five million more Londoners entered the clean air zone on Tuesday as the contentious Ulez expansion by London mayor Sadiq Khan went into effect, sparking a new round of verbal combat between supporters and opponents of the project.
Mr. Khan has encountered fierce opposition to the plan, but a $160 million program administered by Transport for London allows locals, small businesses, sole proprietors, and charities to claim subsidies for discarding non-compliant vehicles.
What is anticipated to be the “biggest, strongest ultra-low emission zone” of its kind in the entire globe has received praise from the Labour Mayor and environmentalists.
However, opponents claimed that because senior drivers in outer boroughs now had to pay a £12.50 daily fee, it will place an additional financial burden on those who are already struggling to make ends meet.