Polluting vehicles would be charged to enter central London from next year under plans announced by mayor Sadiq Khan.
The mayor said he would consult on a package of measures to tackle air pollution in the capital.
The European Court of Justice in 2014 effectively ordered the UK government to produce plans to cut nitrogen dioxide levels in certain areas to below limits set out in the Air Quality Directive.
Ministers last year announced plans to create clean air zones in Leeds, Derby, Nottingham, Birmingham and Southampton by 2020. Now Khan has announced his plans for London, which include:
- Extending the Ultra-Low Emission Zone to the North Circular and South Circular roads
- Considering bringing forward the introduction of the Ultra-Low Emission Zone, currently due to come into force in 2020
- Introducing Ultra-Low Emission Zone standards for heavy vehicles London-wide from 2020
- Slapping an extra charge on the most polluting vehicles entering central London from 2017 – using the Congestion Charge payment and enforcement system.
Khan said: “In the past, London has only responded after an emergency, like with the Clean Air Act, which followed the Great London Smogs of the 1950s.
“I want to act before an emergency, which is why we need big, bold and sometimes difficult policies if London is to match the scale of the challenge.”