September 4, 2017

New Emissions-based T-Charge for Central London

New Emissions-based T-Charge for Central London

A new £10 per day emissions- based surcharge, called the T-Charge, comes into effect from October 23 2017 within the central London congestion charge zone, aimed at deterring older, more polluting vehicles.

The new T-charge applies to many categories of vehicle, both petrol and diesel, that do not meet the minimum Euro IV emission standards, including cars, vans, minibuses, buses, coaches and HGVs, motorised caravans and horseboxes, breakdown and recovery vehicles, private ambulances, motor hearses, dual purpose vehicles and other specialist vehicle types.

Motorcycles are not subject to the T-Charge, but motorised tricycles and quadricylces are, while vehicles with nine or more seats that are currently registered for a discount or are exempt from paying the congestion charge will need to meet the required emissions standards or pay the T-Charge.

Taxis and private hire vehicles that are not actively licensed with Transport for London will also have to pay both the Congestion Charge and the new T-Charge if they do not meet the required emission standards.

The new T-Charge operates from 07.00 to 18.00 every day from Monday to Friday but excludes bank holidays and the period between Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.

What vehicles are affected?

The T-charge applies to all petrol and diesel cars and small vans, not exceeding 1,205kg unladen weight and less than 3500kg gross vehicle weight (GVW), that do not meet Euro IV emissions standards.

They will be charged an additional £10 per day on top of the £11.50 daily congestion charge to give a total daily charge of £21.50.

The same charge applies to vans exceeding 1,205kg unladen and not exceeding 3,500kg GVW, minibuses not exceeding 5,000kg GVW and heavy goods vehicles exceeding 3,500kg.

What is the Euro IV emission standard?

The Euro IV emission standard applies to all new vehicle approvals from January 1, 2005, and all new registrations from January 1, 2006.

Obviously, such vehicles are now more than 10-years-old and the Euro IV standard has since been superseded by Euro V, governing all new cars registered since January 1, 2011, and Euro VI, which applies to all new cars registered since September 1, 2015.

Both subsequent emissions standards have set lower permissible limits for the major pollutants, including carbon monoxide, particulate matter (PM), hydrocarbons and particularly oxides of nitrogen or NOx.

One of the focuses for Euro IV was on cleaning up emissions from diesel cars, especially reducing PM and NOx. Some Euro IV diesel cars were also fitted with particulate filters for the first time.

Euro 4 emission limits (petrol)

  • CO – 1.0 g/km
  • HC – 0.10 g/km
  • NOx – 0.08
  • PM – no limit

Euro 4 emission limits (diesel)

  • CO – 0.50 g/km
  • HC+ NOx – 0.30 g/km
  • NOx – 0.25 g/km
  • PM – 0.025 g/km

How to identify your vehicle’s emissions

Your vehicle registration document, also known as the V5C, will help identify your vehicle’s level of Euro emission standard.

This can usually be determined by the date it was first registered with the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency, which is in section B of the document.

If you do not have this you should check with your vehicle provider, or you can check the date by visiting the Government’s vehicle enquiry service:

Penalty for non-payment

If you do not pay the daily charge, a Penalty Charge Notice will be issued payable by the registered keeper or operator. This will be £130, reduced to £65 if paid within 14 days.

Vehicles that are parked all day in an on-street parking bay and displaying a valid resident’s parking permit, will not be charged for that day. 

How long does the T-Charge last?

The T-Charge will end when the Ultra Low Emission Zone is implemented in September 2020.

The ULEZ is an area equivalent to the London congestion charge zone within which all cars, motorcycles, vans, minibuses, buses, coaches and HGVs will need to meet higher exhaust emission standards or pay a daily charge to travel.

The ULEZ standard will be:

  • Euro III for motorcycles
  • Euro IV for petrol cars, vans and minibuses
  • Euro VI for diesel cars, vans and minibuses
  • Euro VI for lorries, buses and coaches