News update: Bristol to be first diesel free city in the UK!

  • News update: Bristol to be first diesel free city in the UK!



    Bristol is set to become the first UK city to ban diesel cars, in discussions approved by the Bristol City Council on November 5th. Low emission zones have been discussed in UK cities, such as London, Leeds and Birmingham. However, Bristol will become the first city to implement a full diesel ban, as reported in the news this week. Similar systems have been successful, in Oslo a total diesel ban is enforced for days with higher levels of pollution. Although ambitious nature, the ban highlights the cities dedication to ascertain government set legal limits of NO2 for March 2021. The scheme aims to meet the legal limit criteria in the shortest time possible without alienating lower income citizens as with a blanket vehicle charge.




    Like most cities, Bristol has struggled to decrease air pollution levels as seen in the annual NO2 trends of city centre states compared with the annual objective (image below). In an attempt to create cleaner spaces within the UK, 24 of the biggest UKs cities have been legally obligated to reduce their air pollution.


    Trends in Annual NO2 at city centre sites (2010-2018) -credit 2019 Air Quality Annual Status Report (ASR), Bristol City Council Source:


    When, Where and Who will be affected? 

    The clear air zone surrounding Bristol city centre aims to be in effect by 2021. The ‘Diesel Ban Zone’ as reported by Bristol Live includes: the old city (of which our Bristol office is situated within); Easton; Montpellier; St Werburghs; St Pauls and Cotham. Taxis and vans will be charged £9 with HGVs and buses to be charged £100 to enter the surrounding clean air zone between 07:00 and 15:00, if emission standards are not met. Private diesel cars will not be charged for entering the wider clean air zone. View the clean air zone here: 


    What else is Bristol City Council planning?

    The city council also aims to introduce a number of mitigation measures. For example, scrappage schemes for older vehicles allowing diesel car owners the opportunity to purchase and alternative vehicle; grants for taxi and light goods vehicle owners to upgrade or retrofit necessary equipment; and loans to help businesses replace their vehicles.


    Conscious about how air quality can impact you and your business? Check out our previous air pollution blogs, part one and part two!


    Tcarta offers a variety of services regarding air quality modeling -to see how we can help your business, get in touch at