Clean Air Zone

A Clean Air Zone is an area where targeted action is taken to improve air quality. Clean Air Zones aim to reduce all types of air pollution, including nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter, so that people breathe in less of all these pollutants.

Within a Clean Air Zone, there is also a focus on reducing carbon emissions and making sure that improvements in air quality are long lasting. Pollution should not be increased by growth in population, new buildings or changes in land use.

There are two types of Clean Air Zone:

  • non-charging Clean Air Zones – these will have a focus for action to improve air quality but do not include charging money for any type of vehicle to enter the zone.
  • charging Clean Air Zones –drivers must pay to enter these zones if their vehicle is of a type which emits too much pollution.

As part of a plan to improve air quality in the UK and to meet legal air quality limits in the shortest possible time, the Government has instructed Birmingham to introduce a Clean Air Zone.

This is the second version of the Government’s plan. The first version was published and consulted on in 2016, but was the subject of a judicial review.

As a result, a consultation on the new plan closed in June 2017 and the Government is expected to publish the final plan on 31 July 2017.

Download Birmingham's response to government.

We are currently considering how Birmingham’s Clean Air Zone will work. The results of this work, together with the results of the Government’s consultation, will help us to make a detailed plan about how Birmingham approaches this challenge. The exact location of the zone is not yet known, but it is expected to cover at least part of the city centre. The types of vehicle which could be charged to enter have not yet been decided.

A full local public consultation is likely to take place in 2018.