Brum Breathes Special Edition

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#brumbreathes - Birmingham's journey to clean air

17 May 2021
15 Days to go

1 June 2021: A Better Birmingham

The 1 June 2021 does not only represent the start of Birmingham's Clean Air Zone; it represents the start of a Better Birmingham tackling health inequalities in the city caused by poor air quality. Our short video, A Better Birmingham, explains why it is so important we take action to tackle air pollution in the city for current and future generations.

Watch the Better Birmingham Video

Temporary exemption permits

We are currently processing over 1,000 applications for temporary exemption permits and are recruiting more staff to help manage the demand. Eligible applicants who applied with all correct supporting evidence before 10 May 2021 will receive their permit before the launch of the zone on 1 June 2021. Every effort is being made to ensure all applications submitted after this date will be processed in time for the launch but we cannot guarantee this so please note, until your permit is issued you will be subject to charges. 

If you have received an email confirming your application has been approved, your permit will be issued over the next week. You can check the status of your application at any time by logging into your account. Please do not email us requesting an update as this diverts resource away from the permit approval process. 

Please note it is a digital exemption permit; you will not receive anything physical in the post to display in your windscreen.

Log into your exemption account

Clarity on evidence for workers' temporary exemption permits

We are receiving a number of queries relating to evidence required when applying for workers' temporary exemption permits. The eligibility criteria for temporary exemption permits is set out in the Birmingham Clean Air Zone Charging Order which is a legal document and as such, the criteria cannot be varied. Please read the information below for clarity:

  • I am not the registered owner/ keeper on the V5C logbook; it is in my partner/ relative's name but I am a named driver on the insurance policy. Can I still apply?
    No, the name of the employee must be the same as the registered owner/ keeper of the vehicle as stated on the V5C. To continue with the application, the vehicle would need to be in the name of the employee. 
  • My work premises are based outside of the zone but I travel into the zone for deliveries/ meetings/ appointments. Am I still eligible?
    No, the business premises must be situated within the Clean Air Zone. If you are based outside of the zone but travel in for work purposes you may need to speak to your employer about what support they may be able to offer you.

Vehicle Scrappage and Travel Scheme now open

Birmingham City Council has officially launched its Clean Air Zone Vehicle Scrappage and Travel Credit Scheme. The £10m scheme aims to support eligible people working in the Clean Air Zone, and who earn less than £30,000 per annum, with the option of scrapping a vehicle that would otherwise be subject to the daily fee. In return for scrapping a vehicle, successful applicants to the scheme receive a £2,000 grant which can be used on a ‘travel credit’ or to purchase a vehicle that meets the emission standards of the Clean Air Zone.

Find out out about the Vehicle Scrappage and Travel Scheme

The alternatives to private car use

Join representatives of organisations from across the West Midlands to discuss the alternatives to private car use at a free webinar taking place on Wednesday, 26 May from 12pm - 1pm. Find out more about the options, availability and cost, as well as some potential discounts, for travel choices including:

  • Bus
  • Train
  • Metro
  • Pushbike
  • E-bike
  • Electric Scooter

Sign up to the Alternatives to Private Car Use webinar now

Is your business ready for 1 June?

Join Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce and Cllr Waseem Zaffar, Birmingham City Council's Cabinet Member for Transport and the Environment, on Wednesday, 19 June at 11am as they talk through:

  • Understanding the last minute checks businesses can make ahead of 1 June
  • How to inform business networks of the upcoming changes and the support that is available for effected businesses
  • Hearing from a private sector business on how local firms can make the changes required to ensure they are ready for the start of June

The event will also feature a presentation by Mike Baker, Head of Business Development (North West England) for Enterprise Holdings who will discuss how businesses can get ready for the Clean Air Zone.

Register for the free business webinar

Early Notice Letters

Prior to the Clean Air Zone going live, early notice letters will be sent out throughout May 2021 to drivers who have driven within the A4540 Middleway in vehicles that will be charged once the Clean Air Zone is launched.

These letters will warn motorists that from 1 June 2021, if they drive through the Clean Air Zone in that same non-compliant vehicle, they will be subject to charges. The letter will include details of how and when payments will need to be made in the future.

The letters will cease to be issued once the Clean Air Zone launches in June.

If you have not driven through the zone, we apologise that you have received this letter in error. You do not need to take any further action. 

If the vehicle ownership details, registration number or address is incorrect, please contact the DVLA in the first instance who will be able to provide further advice and information. Please do not contact Birmingham City Council as we do not have access to any further information. You can contact the DVLA using their online service or by calling 0300 029 8888 between 8am and 4:30pm.

If you have applied for a temporary exemption permit and received an Early Notice Letter, please be assured that if you have received an email confirming your permit has been approved, you will not be subject to the charge when the Clean Air Zone goes live in June. It is likely your permit was issued after the data capture for the Early Notice Letters. You can check the status of your application at any time by logging into your account.

If you have received an Early Notice Letter and either live, work or operate a business from within the Clean Air Zone you may be eligible to apply for a temporary exemption permit.

New plans for Paradise prioritise public transport and active travel

The newly-unveiled Paradise Public Transport Improvement Scheme looks to respond to the city’s air pollution challenges by prioritising the road for buses, trams, taxis (hackney carriage) and bicycles. Private cars will continue to be able to use the tunnel beneath Paradise for through trips on the A38, whilst maintaining access to key locations within the area.

Read about the Paradise Public Transport Improvement Scheme