Motorists who own vehicles with high levels of emissions may be required to pay to use the A10 – unless they live in Broxbourne.

The plans have been designed to burden motorists of the "most polluting vehicles" driving through the area to reduce pollution.

Tests have shown that on the Broxbourne route the A10 content of nitrogen dioxide can be almost twice as high as the allowable content.

Residents of Broxbourne, however, do not have to pay any fees to enter the proposed 'Clean Air Charging Zone', according to current Council proposals.

The heads of the Hertfordshire County Council and the Broxbourne Borough Council were ordered by the government's Joint Air Quality Unit (JAQU) to take urgent action to reduce pollution.

Initially, the two councils drew up a package of proposals, including a toll for using the A10, lower speed limits, intersection improvements, car sharing, and improvements to public transport.

However, they were told that these measures would not cause the required change in air quality fast enough.

And now, on the instructions of the JAQU, they are preparing plans for the "Charging Clean Air Zone" in an area around a 1.82 km long section of the A10.

As part of the proposal, a charge of £ 10 per day will apply to drivers entering the zone whose vehicles are not equipped with € 4 petrol or € 6 diesel.



Map with the clean air zone in Broxbourne

However, the people living in Broxbourne belong to a number of groups that want to free Hertfordshire County Council from the £ 10 per day fee for entering the zone.

However, this needs to be revised if the air quality targets are not met within the predicted deadline.

And council officials emphasize the border of the zone, the amount of the levy and the proposed exemptions may need to be changed based on the public health goals.

Strategy and program manager Trevor Brennan says a number of exceptions will be included in a modeling program.

And as long as it is judged that the scheme meets the air quality objectives within the "shortest possible time", they remain in the scheme.

According to the report of the County Commission for Motorways and Environmental Protection, residents and businesses in the community would be exempt from the tax.

There are also plans to relieve some buses and coaches, vehicles used in the NHS or social security sector, DVLA-registered "disabled" vehicles and municipal transport vehicles.

Special needs and mental health groups with physical disabilities who have access to treatment in the Broxbourne area may be exempted from case to case.

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And it is expected that all charges will be suspended if diversions due to road closures force motorists to enter the loading zone.

At the meeting of the Panel on Highways and Environment on Wednesday (11 September), the councils were told that the plans should be "modeled".

And the results of this modeling would determine whether the Council could implement the envisaged exceptions.

During the meeting, Liberal Democrat city councilor Ron Tindall suggested that, with the exception of all vehicles younger than 15, the numbers "do not pile up".

However, he was told that the modeling would identify the zone's effectiveness with the current exceptions – and that they might need to be redesigned.

After the meeting, Cabinet Chairman Cllr Phil Bibby said he was "very sincere" that the exemption for residents would remain in the system.

"It would be unfair if you had to tell the residents to go through their own spot," he said.

According to the report to the Cabinet, taxis can be offered financial support, including exemptions, discounts, expiry dates and charging infrastructure for electric vehicles.

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