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Bradford
Thursday, May 26, 2022

Small businesses invited to register interest for CAZ exemption

Bradford Council have still not set a date for the imminent Clean Air Zone plan which will see vans, HGVs and taxi drivers charged daily for non-compliant vehicles.

Bradford Council is yet to announce a date for the new Clean Air Zone that is due to be introduced but small businesses are invited to register their interest in exemption.

A Clean Air Zone (CAZ) is a specific targeted area that aims to improve air quality by introducing a daily charge to enter the zone for vehicles that do not meet environmentally friendly standards.

The main objective of the CAZ is to discourage the use of older, more polluting vehicles from entering the zone by setting a charge for entering.

The CAZ will cover Bradford city centre and the Bradford outer ring road, extending across the Aire valley corridor, across Manningham Lane, Bradford Road and Canal Road area, including Shipley and Saltaire.

Bradford is a Class C+ CAZ which means there will be charges for all non-compliant vehicle types with the exception of passenger vehicles.

The Clean Air Zone (CAZ) will cover Bradford city centre and the Bradford outer ring road.

It will also extend out along the Aire valley corridor, across Manningham Lane, Bradford Road and Canal Road area, including Shipley and Saltaire.

Families and individuals with a car will not have to pay a charge, even if they use their car for work, unlike London’s £15-a-day congestion charge for anyone driving in the city centre.

Instead, it is a daily charge for commercial vehicles, including buses, coaches, lorries, vans, and taxis, who do not comply with the new regulations.

Taxis will have to pay £7 a day, if they are not compliant, whereas HGVs will have to pay £50 a day to drive in the zone.

Most vehicles will have to comply with Euro 6 emissions for diesel, and Euro 4 emissions for petrol, or switch over to an electric car to avoid paying the daily surcharge.

Vans, minibuses, and Large Good Vehicles (LGVs) will have to pay a charge of £9 a day if not compliant.

Bradford Council has said that all money charged will be re-invested to help improve the air quality in the area.

The main objective of the CAZ is to discourage the use of older, more polluting vehicles from entering the zone by setting a charge for entering. Image: Tommy Krombacher.

Every ward in Bradford will benefit from cleaner air. There will be more electric taxis and the number of noncompliant vans, lorries, taxis, and buses will fall. As a result, air quality will improve across the district, both inside and outside the CAZ boundary.

Health research in Bradford has indicated that the largest health benefits will be felt by the most deprived communities in the city. The CAZ will bring levels of nitrogen dioxide within legal limits five years more quickly than without intervention.

However, the CAZ comes at a bad time, with many businesses, particularly in Manningham, suffering a loss of income, and for some, barely staying afloat, because of loss of trade due to Covid-19 restrictions.

In January, Asian Standard found that several businesses in Manningham felt that they were not adequately informed about the imminent changes.

Asian Standard also found out that business owners are concerned about the increase in their outgoing and how they are going to cope with purchasing new vehicles or paying the daily charge, especially after a slow two years in trade due to the pandemic.

Local businesses and registered organisations can apply for up to 3 vehicle exemptions from CAZ charges. Businesses up to Small & Medium Enterprise (SME), which includes self-employed, sole-traders, and registered organisations can apply.

Local businesses and registered organisations can apply for up to 3 vehicle exemptions from CAZ charges. Image: Ernest Ojeh.

The exemption process is not open yet, but businesses are invited to register their interest, here.

A spokesperson for Bradford Council, said: “The Bradford Clean Air Zone will be launched in Spring 2022, we are waiting for an exact date to be agreed with the Government.

“There are no changes to the charging table with regards to taxi vehicles. Taxi drivers with non-compliant vehicles will be charged to drive in the Clean Air Zone, however we have the highest levels of support in the UK available for all Bradford taxis, and over 80% have already upgraded.

“We are hoping to launch the exemptions by the end of March 2022. This will mean that Bradford businesses including self-employed and sole traders can apply for up to 3 exemptions for non-compliant vehicles, exemptions are not available to the taxi trade.

“Bradford households with a non-compliant private vehicle will also be able to apply for one exemption, this includes vans, horseboxes and campervans. All passenger cars and motorbikes will not be charged and do not need to apply for an exemption.”

Here is the full list of the proposed exemptions:

  • School buses and coaches (for the use of transporting people attending Bradford educational establishments).
  • Specialist Heavy Duty Vehicles (for example, those used in construction or vehicle recovery).
  • Local small businesses and registered organisations can apply for up to 3 vehicle exemptions from CAZ charges including coaches, HGVs, LGVs, and minibuses.
  • Residents can apply for an exemption from CAZ charges for 1 vehicle, LGVs, minibuses, and campervans.
  • Leisure vehicles in private ownership (for example, motorhome or motorised horsebox) which is for personal use only and not commercial use.
  • Charity and community transport vehicles – vehicles used solely for the delivery of work of social or charitable value (for example, vans collecting food for foodbanks).
  • Limited supply vehicles (those waiting for replacement or retrofit solutions which are in limited supply).
  • Emergency road diversion
  • Emergency services vehicles (vehicles responding to an emergency)
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