Green taxi guide launched to support drive for cleaner city air

Zemo Partnership EventZemo Partnership News

Fri 05 October 2018 View all news

Improving the quality of the air we breathe in our towns and cities has never been more important, yet many local authorities are struggling to meet challenging targets for cutting pollution. To support today’s announcement from Defra which provides details on actions to tackle air quality from 33 local authorities, the Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership (LowCVP) and Energy Saving Trust (EST) are jointly publishing the ‘Low Emission Taxi Guide’.

The average age of a traditional black cab in the UK is now 12 years[1] and the higher emissions these older vehicles produce is coming under ever greater scrutiny from authorities and licensing bodies. The same goes for private hire minicabs. Fortunately, many cleaner solutions exist within this crucial sector; the new Low Emission Taxi Guide provides local authorities and the taxi trade with best practice guidance on the latest low emission technologies, infrastructure and policy options available, and how best to speed-up the adoption of ultra-clean taxi and private hire vehicles.

There are over 290,000 licenced taxi and private hire vehicles across England and Wales[2] and 23,000 in Scotland[3], so encouraging the switch to new low emission alternatives within our city centres is an important part of plans to improve air quality and cut greenhouse gas emissions.

The Low Emission Taxi Guide is published to coincide with today’s announcement from Defra of additional Government plans to tackle air pollution, detailing how 33 local authorities will be taking action to reduce nitrogen dioxide emissions (NO2).

The Low Emission Taxi Guide - available to download for free from is aimed at both local authorities and the taxi and private hire vehicle drivers themselves.

For local authorities wishing to reduce road transport emissions, this comprehensive, free guide provides advice and guidance on implementing best practice policy measures, initiatives and incentives to accelerate the take up of clean and low carbon vehicles to help comply with legal air quality standards. It also includes details of the latest low emission vehicle technologies and fuels, plus valuable policy case studies and an overview of the national measures in place to reduce road transport emissions.

For taxi and private hire vehicle drivers who may be required to switch to low emission vehicles to operate in an area, this guide will help in the choice of the most appropriate vehicle technology (or retrofit option to convert an existing taxi) for their journey needs. It will also help operators to understand and how to comply with licensing policies and other local policy initiatives aimed at improving air quality.

To introduce the guide to local authorities and operator associations, the LowCVP will be running a Low Emission Taxi Guide webinar in November and face-to-face workshop in early 2019. To be involved, please register your interest at

LowCVP’s Head of Projects, Gloria Esposito said: “Our current fleet of ageing taxis and private hire vehicles risks holding back the efforts to improve air quality.

“Accelerating the introduction of low emission taxis is a great opportunity to help clean up urban air, particularly in congested high traffic areas, while supporting innovative UK industries. This guide complements our low emission bus and van guides and is designed to help local authorities and drivers understand the best ways to make this change happen.

“As clean air zones are introduced, low emission taxis will provide a highly effective and ultra-clean transport solution for the widest variety of users and can play a major role in a truly low emission transport system.”

Matthew Eastwood, Head of Transport at Energy Saving Trust (EST) commented: “The Low Emission Taxi Guide is the most comprehensive on the subject, providing best practice guidance that looks at the latest low carbon transport technologies and the infrastructure required to fuel them. This valuable resource supports the adoption of low carbon taxi and private hire vehicles, contributing to cleaner air in our towns and cities.”

The Low Emission Taxi Guide is available to download (in PDF format) for free from

To receive a free printed copy of the guide in the post, please email your details to

For the full press release, click here.

NOTE: A webinar to provide further insight into the LE Taxi Guide and enable stakeholder questions and interaction will be held on 21 November. For more details, click here


[1] ULEV Taxi Scheme, Feasibility studies for 8 Local Authorities

[2] Department for Transport, Taxi Statistics, 2017

[3] Transport Scotland, Scottish Transport Statistics, No 36, 2017

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