BUS operators have marked the start of year two of Glasgow’s Low Emission Zone (LEZ), which will see a significant increase in the proportion of city centre bus journeys that must be made with low emission vehicles.
As part of the phased implementation of Glasgow’s LEZ — which currently affects only local service buses — at least 40 per cent of journeys through the city centre will now be made by buses that meet the required emission standard, and follows significant fleet investment by operators.
Introduced in December 2018 to reduce emissions and protect public health, Glasgow’s LEZ is Scotland’s first, and is modelled to reduce levels of harmful air pollution from road traffic that particularly affect the very young, the elderly and those with existing respiratory and cardiovascular conditions.
This latest investment by the main city operators follows on from the initial year one LEZ requirement that not less than 20 per cent of bus journeys through the city centre were made by low emission vehicles; and will contribute towards improving air quality.
By the end of 2022, all buses travelling through Glasgow city centre are expected to meet LEZ emission standards, at which time the LEZ will broaden in scope and become applicable to all other vehicle types, including taxis and private cars.
Councillor Anna Richardson, convener for sustainability and carbon reduction said: “I’m delighted that the bus operators have reached this low emission milestone as part of the phased introduction of Glasgow’s LEZ.
“It’s a testament to their commitment to improving air quality and providing an improved experience for passengers that they have made such a substantial investment in their fleet.
“We’ve introduced a range of measures to tackle city centre congestion, for example new bus gates, that encourage a shift towards alternative travel options such as bus, offering it up as a convenient and sustainable alternative to the car.
“The council has worked very closely with bus operators to phase in the LEZ and we’ll continue to work in partnership to improve services that are vital to the lives of Glaswegians.”