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The Bristol Clean Air Zone

Words by Stuart on 23/05/2022 11:14:00

What is a Clean Air Zone?

A clean air zone is where the local authority actively tries to improve air quality. Initially, clean air zones only affected buses, taxis, and lorries, but now the concept has been extended to include private vehicles, i.e. the car you drive. The move is part of a broader effort to improve air quality, which will see petrol and diesel cars phased out by 2030, followed by hybrid models five years later.

By reducing the public's exposure to nitrogen dioxide at a specific location, a Clean Air Zone aims to:

  • restrict the highest polluting vehicles
  • encourage the use of cleaner vehicles
  • Promote public transport, cycling and walking

A Clean Air Zone does not prohibit any vehicles from entering, but older and more polluting vehicles have to pay a daily fee for travelling within it.

There is no charge for:

  • Petrol vehicles that meet Euro 4, 5, and 6 standards, roughly from 2006 onward
  • Euro 6 diesel vehicles manufactured after 2015

Bristol Clean Air Zone Map

See the online vehicle checker HERE

Why Bristol needs a Clean Air Zone

To meet pollution limits set by the government, Bristol will introduce a Clean Air Zone to ensure they are met as soon as possible. Road traffic, particularly diesel engines, is a significant source of air pollution in cities.

Air pollution affects everyone, especially:

  • children
  • older people
  • people with heart, breathing and underlying health conditions

The Clean Air Zone in Bristol will take effect in late summer 2022. Businesses and organizations must review their vehicles before introducing the zone.

What to do if this affects you

Bristol City Council has agreed a £42m package of support with the government, which will include:

  • A loan and grant program worth £1.8 million will help people who need to change their vehicles.
  • The government will provide £32 million to upgrade HGVs, LGVs, taxis, and private hire vehicles.
  • £5,9 million will help people switch from private transport to public transport and make more journeys on foot and by bicycle while providing free electric bike loans, bike training, and bus tickets.

This support program is designed to reduce the overall cost of replacing or modifying vehicles that do not meet the zone's emission standards.

Who can apply for grants and loans

Financial support will either be in the form of a grant or a loan. Maximum grants are £1,500 for cars and £4,500 for vans.

Residents and businesses who qualify can apply for the maximum grant or maximum loan. Interest will be paid on all loans by the council.

Individuals, sole traders, charities and small businesses located in Bristol City Council areas or Clean Air Zones will be given priority.

Individuals

In the first round of funding, you'll be given priority if you work in the Clean Air Zone earning less than £26,000, increasing to £27,000 in spring 2022.

Businesses

All businesses operating within the zone will be eligible for funding. However, to begin with, business grants will be prioritized for small to medium-sized enterprises (SME), sole traders, and charities.

To qualify as an SME, you need to meet at least two of the following conditions:

  • Turnover must be less than £36 million per year
  • The balance sheet total cannot exceed £18 million
  • The average number of employees must not exceed 250

Support packages may be extended to other businesses and organizations outside the zone depending on the level of interest in the first round of loans and grants.

You will not be charged to drive in the zone if your vehicle meets the emission standards. In any case, updating your fleet may save you money in the long run and reduce emissions. You might also encourage your employees to walk, cycle, and take public transportation to reduce their carbon footprint.

Taxi and private hire drivers

Bristol City Council only offers loans and grants to drivers licensed by the city.

In conclusion

Clean Air Zones are a much-needed addition to our polluted cities. However, they are a blow to many on low incomes and come when we are all feeling the pinch of inflation. But at Electric Bike Sales, we do have a solution.....eBikes.

Some of the benefits of riding eBikes include:

  • Improved physical health.
  • Easier to ride. Pedal-assist gives riders a boost. You feel like a superhero.
  • Better mental health.
  • A great alternative to cars.
  • Faster and safer than regular push bikes.

See our blogs "Eight Health Benefits of Riding an eBike" and "3 Reasons to Use an electric bike for your daily commutes"

Raleigh Stride 2 eCargo Bike

Ditch the car. The school run just got fun. The Raleigh Stride 2 is an elegant, eco-friendly two-wheeled alternative to typical family transport. Designed with practicality in mind, this classy cargo bike can carry a lot. Kids, pets, parcels, the weekly shop - you name it, the Stride has got the whole family covered. With a large load capacity and cargo area to transport the children, combined with all the efficiency of electrical assistance, you can forget honking the horn when you're stuck in traffic - instead, pedal the stress of rush hour away on the Stride.

  • 2 wheel cargo ebike
  • bosch performance cx cargo line motor, designed to perform with heavier loads, adapts accordingly to weight onboard
  • with a range of 40 miles on a single charge; the stride delivers peace of mind, undertaking multiple short journeys with plenty left in the tank.
  • Integrated lights mean you can keep cargoing in lower light and keep you and your precious cargo more visible in traffic
  • british weather wont hold you back either, thanks to built-in mudguards
  • 1000Wh - we can upgrade this model to dual battery
  • options including rain tent

RieseRiese and Muller Load 75 Vario Electric Bike Coal Grey Matt

The Load 75.

Even more space for your freedom.

Feel the wind in your hair, enjoy the speed, quick stops and fast starting. And take as much with you as you need. This is what freedom feels like. With its low centre of gravity, Riese & Müller Control Technology and a huge loading surface, the Load 75 combines riding dynamics and load options, like no other E-Cargo bike. The strong, latest-generation Bosch Performance CX motor delivers hitherto unknown power. And the Load 75 is also extremely reliable, thanks to its high-grade components.

Riese and Muller Multicharger Mixte GT Vario 750 Electric Bike Utility Grey/Black Matt

The Multicharger Mixte.

Everything and everyone on board.

Taking the two little ones to nursery during the week, heading off on a day outing with kit and caboodle or perhaps a big family shopping trip? No matter what your plans are: the Multicharger Mixte is up for anything. What’s its special feat? It handles with the lightness of a normal E-Bike, while boasting superior safety. And, thanks to the comfortable step-through, getting on and off could not be easier.
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