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Oxford plans to be a zero-emission city by 2035
12 October 2017, 05:52 | Hattie Nash
Petrol and diesel cars will be banned from Oxford City Centre from 2020.
The city's authorities are looking to significantly reduce nitrogen dioxide pollution in the coming years, with the council looking to have no pollution by vehicles in the inner city at all by 2030.
It is the first city to produce a plan on cutting illegal levels of emissions following the government's proposal in July to stop the sale and production of petrol and diesel vehicles by 2040. Over 40,000 deaths a year in the United Kingdom are caused by air pollution according to a 2016 report by the Royal College of Physicians and Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health.
Experts claim that the plan is being introduced could reduce the risky levels of harmful nitrogen dioxide (NO2) present in the city centre by up to 70 per cent. Oxford has already seen a 36.9 percent fall in harmful NO2 levels over the past decade but many parts of the city centre are failing to meet the 40µg/m3 average set by the European Union, despite its desire to become a true "cycling city."
Oxford City Council has been awarded £500,000 of government funding to install charging points for electric taxis, as well as £800,000 to pay for 100 electric vehicle charging points for use by residents.
On Monday 16 October the City and County Councils will launch a six-week public consultation on the proposals, seeking views on the speed of the implementation, and the vehicle types and roads affected.
Tanner has urged everyone who uses the city centre to take part, adding: "We need to know what people's needs are, so that we can plan a Zero Emission Zone that minimises impact on business and residents while maximising impact on the city's health". Tell us what you think in the comments area below!
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