Birmingham’s Clean Air Zone Fines Council Vehicles

Thu 5th Aug 2021

Drivers in Birmingham have been hit by more than 44,000 fines in the first month of a scheme to drive down carbon emissions in the UK’s second city.

The Clean Air Zone, which has been introduced by Birmingham City Council, is similar to the Ultra Low Emission Zone in London, charging older, less green vehicles for entering certain central areas of the city.

The charge of £8-a-day is available for those cars which don’t comply with the new regulations, and after launching in June, the cameras have caught 44,106 vehicles who had entered the CAZ without paying. Those who don’t register to pay for their vehicle to enter the CAZ must pay a fine of £120, reduced to £60 if paid within six days. 

Data published by Birmingham City Council has revealed that only a quarter have paid their fines so far, with the council offering drivers the option of only paying the £8 fee in a soft-launch of the scheme. Though if the £120 fines remained, the council could rake in more than £5m in the first month alone.

The scheme has also had the embarrassment of revealing that 82 of the vehicles caught out were actually council vehicles. The council admitted that these were likely refuse collection vehicles entering the city centre for repairs.

“It is very early days for the Clean Air Zone but it is good to see a reduction in the number of non-compliant vehicles entering the zone and I remain committed to publishing regular updates about the operation and impact of the zone on traffic and air quality,” said Councillor Waseem Zaffar MBE, Cabinet Member for Transport and Environment at Birmingham City Council.

“I also want to take this opportunity to remind all drivers to check whether or not they will need to pay the daily fee by visiting 

“And if they do need to pay the fee there is a comprehensive package of temporary and permanent exemptions and financial incentives that we will continue to use to help the transition to a clean air city.”