Petrol and diesel cars to pay more expensive charges for parking in major law change

Bath and North East Somerset could soon charge cars to park based on how polluting their cars are, in a bid to cut emissions. Many councils already charge people for parking permits based on the emissions output of their vehicle or engine capacity.

Oftentimes, there is a 25 percent surcharge on top of this for any diesel vehicles.

There are now plans to charge drivers using these rules when using pay and display parking in the area.

Richard Samuel, cabinet member for resources at Bath and North East Somerset, said that vehicle pollution has seriously damaging impacts on health.

He added: “The more polluting the vehicle, the higher the parking charge you pay.

READ MORE: All UK drivers could be fined £70 simply for parking their cars

“What’s being done is trying to create a causal link between the emissions of your vehicle and the charge you pay,” ITV reported.

No details about what the charges will be or when the change will come into effect have yet been made public.

The concept of emissions-based parking is not new and has been introduced by other councils around the UK.

Lewisham Council introduced the new charging system for its pay and display car parks in April 2022.


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The parking charges are split up into bands which categorise which vehicles will have to pay based on how environmentally friendly their car is.

The maximum charge is £33.50 for those wanting to pay for up to nine hours, who have a non-Euro 6 compliant diesel vehicle.

For Band 5 – all non-Euro 6 compliant diesel vehicles producing more than 201g/km of CO2 – one hour of parking will cost drivers £5.50.

In comparison, cars in Band 1 which release less than 100g/km of CO2 will only pay £1.50 for parking.

READ MORE: Electric cars to represent less than a third of all vehicles by 2030

All electric vehicles would pay this rate, being charged just £13.50 for nine hours, just £1 more expensive than it would be for a diesel car to park for three hours.

Council bosses expect to bring in around £300,000 extra a year from the changes to short-stay parking for cars and vans.

Many were upset with the new parking format, saying it was a “tax on the poor”, especially during the cost of living crisis.

Speaking to earlier this year, Peter O’Driscoll, managing director at RingGo, commented on their impact in London.

He said: “It’s important to remember that there are multiple options to combat vehicle emissions, and alternative green schemes in local areas can be explored.

“These have minimal up-front investment and options to tailor for each individual Council’s needs; Emissions-Based Parking (EBP) presents itself as a unique solution here.

“An EBP scheme enables an authority to levy a surcharge on the most polluting vehicles when they pay for parking – with emission reduction as a result.

“Such schemes can be introduced flexibly, depending on the requirements of each individual area, which is a feature fixed infrastructure schemes lack.”

Mr O’Driscoll added that diesel usage in Westminster dropped by 14 percent after a RingGo EBP was launched recently.

A further nine percent drop of diesel vehicles was seen in Hammersmith and Fulham.

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