Ban Private Cars in London)
Road pricing is one tool (within London Mayoral powers) to address the externalities of motor traffic. Cars are a major polluter of the air and water in London. Whether that is from particulates generated by brake, tyre and road wear or emissions from the tailpipe.
Motor traffic dominates and consumes large parts of public space in the city, impeding safe sustainable active travel. Congestion creates an inefficient and stagnant environment and cars are now the fastest growing contributor to Climate Meltdown. These are but a few of the externalities.
Recent research shows Air pollution spikes are directly linked to hospitalisation. There have so far been nine high air pollution alerts in London under Sadiq Khan’s Mayoralty.
I have been told it is within Mayoral powers to raise the Congestion Charge on high air pollution days. One wonders why this has not been done immediately, given the serious correlation between air pollution spikes and hospitalisation? Surely that is a moral imperative?
This article describes how children are being hospitalised this Summer because of illegal air pollution. It makes the most visceral case for employing road charging to save lives and improve public health.
Guddi Singh, a paediatric doctor in London, writes:
‘The cocktail of pollution and pollen in London kills people. Politicians should spend a night on the wards to see the harm.