Sadiq Khan’s Ulez risks driving up pollution outside London, experts warn


London Mayor Sadiq Khan was forced to expand the scrappage scheme at the beginning of August, which Transport for London says will ensure the most polluting cars are not resold outside the M25.

Motorists can hand over non-compliant vehicles for scrap and receive payments in return, which can go towards the cost of a new or used low-emission one. Currently, grants go up to £2,000 for a car, £1,000 for a motorcycle, and between £7,000 and £11,500 for minibuses and vans.

A wheelchair-accessible vehicle can garner a scrappage grant of up to £10,000, or £6,000 for a retrofit to make it emit fewer emissions and qualify for an exemption from the charges.

Cabinet ministers were considering using a little-known legal power that allows them to reject a London mayor’s transport strategy if it is “inconsistent with national policies”.

However, The Telegraph understands the formal legal advice commissioned concluded that the move would fail if challenged.

The expansion will mean drivers without a petrol vehicle that complies with Euro 4 emissions standards or a diesel car that complies with Euro 6 rules will be forced to pay £12.50 every day they use their car.

Most diesel cars registered before September 2015 and vans registered before September 2016 are liable alongside most petrol cars registered before 2001.

A Transport for London spokesman said the expansion of the “very targeted” Ulez scheme was expected to reduce emissions by more than 5pc.

“To date, almost 13,000 applications for scrappage grants have been approved and more than £52m has already been committed to Londoners and London’s small businesses and charities,” the spokesman said.

They added the scrappage scheme would “ensure the most polluting vehicles are removed from our streets and not sold elsewhere in the UK”.