VIDEO – Islington Council leads the battle against diesel vehicles in London
In November last year, Islington Council called on London Mayor Sadiq Khan to completely ban diesel vehicles from operating in the City within the next decade. It is a strong statement that, along with the changes to the Archway Gyratory over the summer, once again puts Islington on the forefront of the fight to make London a greener city to live in.
It has also been revealed that, only one month into 2018, London has already exceeded its pollution limits for the whole year. As a consequence, Islington and Hackney are set to ban petrol and diesel cars during peak commuter times.
“In Islington we are committed to low emission vehicles and removing polluting ones,” says local council member Claudia Webbe. Yet, all of Islington’s charging points currently in place, which includes just one rapid charger, are available only to paying residents – making a commute to Islington rather unattractive for non-residential EV owners.
This includes future EV black cab drivers. Since December last year, a new electric black cab has been operating on the streets of London. And under TfL rules, as of this year all newly purchased black cabs must either be electric or capable of zero emission. But many cab drivers have criticised the rules, saying that a proper rapid charging network must first be put in place to keep up with future demands. And as it stands now, Islington is yet to put up any taxi-only charging points.
Yet, that will change, according to council member Webbe, who blames the issue on the slow development in electric charging technology. “As fast as the technology is developing, we are installing charging points,” she says, promising one hundred new chargers, including rapid and taxi-only charging points, by the end of this financial year. And according to Webbe, once the Borough reaches more than 400 chargers, “we will terminate the residential fee and make it widely available for all EVs within and outside of the Borough.”