Wales

Cardiff council considering congestion charge plan

A picture of congestion charge sign close up, with a clear sky in the background. Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption A congestion charge is one idea being considered as part of efforts to cut air pollution in Cardiff

Motorists could be charged for driving into Cardiff as part of plans to cut pollution.

Low emission zones are being looked at by Cardiff council after the Welsh Government told the authority it had to tackle pollution in the city.

Other ideas include a cycle 'super highway', making the city centre into a 20mph zone and introducing a system similar to London's Oyster Cards.

The council is asking people for their views.

Cardiff council cabinet member for transport, Caro Wild, said the Welsh capital's transport system "had to change".

He said: "We are at a crucial moment. High levels of illness in our area are caused or made worse by how we travel and the air we breathe."

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Public Health Wales previously described air pollution as a "public health crisis"

Last year, health agency Public Health Wales (PHW) said air pollution levels needed to be tackled urgently.

PHW figures suggested the number of deaths per year that could be attributed to poor air quality increased to more than 225 across Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan.

Cardiff council has since been given a directive from the Welsh Government to clean up the city's air.

Different types of low-emission zones will be looked at as part of the council's consultation, including charging differing amounts for certain vehicles and Oxford's model - which will ban petrol and diesel vehicles entering the city from 2020.

The level of charge and what parts of the city would come under the plans are not yet known.

Similar schemes have been touted in the past, but were dropped following opposition from members of the public.

The public consultation runs until 1 July.

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