Helping businesses gear up for Scotland’s Low Emission Zones
Scotland’s Low Emissions Zones (LEZs) were introduced on 31 May 2022, and it’s important that businesses get ready for enforcement after local grace periods end.
LEZs will be enforced for all vehicles on 1 June 2023 in Glasgow, on 30 May 2024 for vehicles in Dundee and on 1 June 2024 for vehicles in Aberdeen and Edinburgh. Owners of a petrol vehicle registered before 2006 or a diesel vehicle registered before September 2015 which drives in the zone will receive a penalty charge notice (PCN).* Certain exemptions will apply – find out more about those here.
Once LEZs are enforced, businesses will need to consider the impact on their business if vehicles do not comply with the standards.
LEZs aim to help protect public health by improving air quality. They also help the environment by reducing greenhouse gas emissions - making our cities more attractive places in which to live, work and to visit.
LEZs stop the dirtiest polluting vehicles from driving in the zone. By moving away from older and more polluting vehicles, your business can directly contribute to improving local air quality and reducing emissions.
The Scottish Government is committed to supporting the move towards cleaner, low carbon modes of transport, and funding is available to help businesses and organisations with operating premises within 20km of a Low Emission Zone prepare for when LEZs are enforced.
Grants and loans
The LEZ Support Fund, administered by Energy Saving Trust, provides micro-businesses and sole traders that operate within 20km of one of Scotland’s four LEZs with a £2,000 grant towards the safe disposal of a car or van that doesn’t meet LEZ standards.
Eligible businesses can also apply for a further £1000 grant via the Travel Better Fund to invest in a cargo or e-cargo bike. To find out more about the Low Emission Support Fund and and see if your business is eligible please visit: energysavingtrust.org.uk/grants-and-loans/low-emission-zone-support-fund-for-businesses/
Interest-free loans of up to £30,000 are also available via the eBike Business Loan, which supports businesses who want to invest in more sustainable methods of transport.
Retrofit your vehicle
Grants are available to help support micro-businesses (operating within 20km of a LEZ) with the cost of retrofitting engines or exhausts on vans and HGVs to Euro 6/VI standard which meets LEZ standards.
Grants are available to cover up to 80% of the cost of a retrofit solution for:
- Light commercial vehicles (LCVs) – 80% of the cost, up to a maximum of £5,000
- Taxis – 80% of the cost, up to a maximum of £10,000
- Heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) and refuse collection vehicles (RCVs) – 80% of the cost, up to a maximum of £16,000
To find out more about the Retrofit Fund please visit energysavingtrust.org.uk/grants-and-loans/low-emission-zone-retrofit-fund/
For taxi operators looking to move to electric vehicles, the Switched on Taxis Loan is also available. Interest-free loans of up to £150,000 are available from Energy Saving Trust, funded by Transport Scotland to let owners and operators of hackney cabs or private hire taxis replace their current vehicle with an eligible ultra-low emission vehicle.
To find out more please visit: energysavingtrust.org.uk/grants-and-loans/switched-on-taxis-loan/
*These dates are only indicative - please check with your vehicle manual or the manufacturer to confirm.