Since 2007, almost one third of London’s borough authorities (local councils) have introduced schemes that charge motorists up to three times more for a parking permit if they have a bigger-engined car.
The CO2-based permits are just one of several means that the local councils are employing to manage car ownership, traffic, and reduce CO2 emissions. But the Automobile Association says that it is just another revenue raising device, under the “green” guise, claiming that “it is ludicrous to penalize a vehicle on its emissions when the car is switched off”.
Increasing car ownership in the UK is forcing councils to act, faced as they are with ever growing demand for roadside spaces, with some councils not allocating parking space permits until spaces become available. Norwich council has even implemented a charging structure based on vehicle length!
In 2009 there were 31 million cars in the UK; this is predicted to jump to 32.4m by 2015 and 36.1m by 2024.
In September 2009, PCI published an article about several models of congestion charging and permit pricing structures from Europe, including the ECOPASS system from Milan, which has toll charges calculated on the car’s pollution level, the applicable tariff and the availability of credit in the customer’s account.
You can read more about this in Cristina Lynn’s article, called ‘Traffic Congestion – Sydney’s Paradigm Paralysis’.