All new London Taxis registered from January 2018 will need to be zero emission capable, Mayor Boris Johnson has announced.
In order to make a contribution to cleaning up the capital’s air quality, Transport for London says the new taxis will need to operate in zero emission mode while in pollution hotspots.
City Hall says the Mayor and TfL are considering a number of measures which will assist drivers with the cost of new Taxis. They are also looking at ways to encourage the early adoption of the new greener vehicles ahead of the 2018 deadline.
A number of Taxi manufacturers are developing new, cleaner vehicles.
Mayor Johnson said: “The London taxi is iconic in so many ways – not least in terms of its eye-catching looks and the way it is piloted by wily experts who know the capital like the back of their hand.
“To date its one Achilles heel, particularly of older models, has been the pollution generated by chugging diesel engines. As part of my mission to improve our air quality and drive innovation, I’m making a firm pledge to Londoners that from 2018 all taxis presented for licensing should be zero emission capable.”
Baroness Jenny Jones, a Green party member of the London Assembly, urged the Mayor to do more to encourage the early adoption of cleaner vehicles.
She said that although electric taxis will be available by 2015, the capital’s network of 1,300 charging points was insufficient to support them.
She said: “The Mayor should get on with meeting his original target of 25,000 charging points in order to help those taxi drivers who want to do the right thing, and make the switch to non-polluting vehicles next year.
“Londoners can rightly expect to be breathing clean air and we can’t afford to miss the opportunity to go electric, when we have between one and two thousand taxis being replaced every year.”