Use carrot and stick to tackle diesel drivers, says Brighton peer

Posted On 01 Mar 2018 at 7:23 pm

A Brighton peer has called on the government to use both carrot and stick to tackle the pollution caused by diesel cars.

Jenny Jones, who sits in the House of Lords as Baroness Jones of Moulsecoomb, set out her case in the Financial Times today (Thursday 1 March).

The Green Party’s only peer wrote to the newspaper after it reported yesterday that two German cities had won the backing of the courts to ban diesels.

Diesels emit nitrogen dioxide (NO2) which has been blamed for causing breathing problems and early deaths.

In a letter, Baroness Jones wrote: “The ban on heavily polluting vehicles from Stuttgart and Düsseldorf has direct consequences for our equally polluted urban centres in the UK.

“The government strategy to combat air pollution relies on local authorities implementing ‘low emission zones’ in the 16 urban zones where the UK is above the European legal limits.

“These zones have to discourage the most polluting vehicles by charging them if they enter a pollution hotspot.

“The ruling in Germany clears the way for daily charges to be set so high they amount to an outright ban on older diesel vehicles.

“We all have to accept that the days of diesel vehicles are over.

“The UK government must create a billion-pound scrappage fund to encourage diesel owners on to public transport and into a new generation of electric vehicles.”

Her letter was published as members of the Brighton and Hove City Council Licensing Committee debated the age and emissions standards for replacement taxi and private hire vehicles in the area.

They hope to encourage cabbies to switch to electric cars but there is reportedly only one fully electric taxi or private hire vehicle operating in Brighton and Hove.

Jenny Jones, Baroness Jones of Moulsecoomb

Air pollution has been a problem along key bus routes such as North Street, Lewes Road and London Road, with relatively narrow roads and high-fronted buildings creating a canyon effect.

Similar physical conditions and idling engines in Rottingdean High Street have also led to localised problems there.

A report last year noted: “Brighton and Hove City Council is compliant with all pollutants listed in the national Air Quality Strategy with the exception of nitrogen dioxide (NO2).

“The city first declared an ‘air quality management area’ (AQMA) for NO2 in 2004.

“The two current AQMAs for NO2 were declared in 2013.”

One of the two air quality management areas covers the centre of Brighton and Hove through to south west Portslade. The other is Rottingdean village.

  1. Gerald Wiley Reply

    Excellent idea – and as the most polluting NO vehicles include Green Party / Big Lemon bio-fuel vehicles, then perhaps they should be banned too? Albeit that many petrol vehicles also produce NO at higher levels than modern diesels.

    I understand Lemon MD/Green councillor Tom is trying to get more loyal supporters to finance electric buses to replace his dirty chip-fat ones to operate the council funded non-financilly viablr bus services and is also supporting the diesel ban.

    Perhaps time to also ban non-catalytic motor bikes, high CO2 petrol cars and diesel trains, taxis and commercial vehicles as well?

  2. Benny Reply

    Drove from Saltdean to Newhaven last week. Heavy traffic, took 30 mins. Saw one, sorry, ONE bus. Council are the worst enemy. Get someone in who has knowledge of traffic and roads not idiots who think slowing traffic is clever

  3. Richard West Reply

    Great idea; Close all shops in town centre as no lorries can get in to stock them. All turn to electric cars that are over priced, nowhere near enough charging points let alone the Fire risk. If they catch fire you have to leave it 24 hrs to go out as it is a chemical fire so you cant put it out. I dont think I want one of them in my garage thank you. Also the very much forgotten issue of getting rid of the old lithium batteries once you have paid nearly 10 grand to replace them. GET REAL build a road system to get traffic moving and see how much pollution drops. Also a up to date Tram system bringing people in from park and ride stops at Waterhall, Falmer ,Rottingdean and Portslade could be of great benefit.

  4. Joe Stains Reply

    Jenny Jones and the rest of her incapable and incompetent Greens are a bunch of clowns.

    The Green Party; the party that claims to believe passionately about the environment, but advocate in their manifesto no borders and uncontrolled, unlimited mass-immigration…

  5. Leo Reply

    Another bonkers idea from those that don’t even drive electric. We diesel drivers will never surrender!

  6. Florence Jones Reply

    We would all adopt electric if we could, but the infrastructure of sufficient charging points does not yet exist, It can take 40 minutes for a charge, but two hours waiting for three vehicles in the queue before even plugging in. Couple this to the parking in Brighton that means it is unlikely that you will ever get to park outside your house to charge, and you have a total fantasy.
    Green politics as usual is chaotic and ridiculous. They would have the whole world grind to a shuddering halt.

  7. Florence Jones Reply

    She may as well insist that all cars are banned and that we should teleport everywhere.
    The technology and infrastructure for what she proposes on this scale DOES NOT EXIST. It works for the very few, but is not a model that can be sacked up with current technology.

  8. rolivan Reply

    Does the Baroness of Moulscoomb actually spend any time in the City?Just have shuttle buses or better still a tram running between The Steine and Palmeira Sq and buses from tge suburbs terminating at those points.

    • Joe Stains Reply

      Probably not; like most Greens, she is obsessed with anti-fracking, Palestine, women’s rights, diversity, multiculturalism and ‘enrichment’, and lives on a completely different planet compared to the rest of us.

      I once heard the Baroness at a public meeting demanding the implementation of trans-genders toilets in Brighton; this was during the refuse collection strike when 99% of Brighton was looking like a Mumbai slum as we hadn’t had our refuse collected for nearly two months…

  9. WhyOhWhyOh Reply

    I thought they were doing their best to close all public toilets in Brighton and Hove? I guess that is why all those cars park at night along old shoreham road while people run into the park for a p155 or worse.

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