An article written on blog.wired.com (via The Evening Standard) reports on the latest initiative of the city council to encourage drivers to opt for cleaner cars. It seems that people driving cars that emit more than 180 grams of CO2 per kilometer will have to pay more if they want to park on the streets of the London borough of Richmond.
The most polluting cars will be charged about a dollar an hour more than normal to park in the area. Although the plan to set parking fees according to the vehicle's emissions began as a limited experiment in some areas of Richmond, it has been extended to a larger scheme in an effort to stop polluting the environment through CO2 emissions. The plan is expected to affect 40 percent of the cars.
"I see the extension of the CO2 -related parking policy as completing something we started two years ago," confessed Richmond Traffic Transport and Parking Council member David Trigg. "Because of technology advances it has now become possible to apply the principles to everyone who parks in our borough - resident and visitors alike," he added.
Therefore, vehicles like the Porsche Cayenne that emit more than 180 grams of CO2 per kilometer will pay the most, namely £1.90 (about $2.89) for an hour of parking on the street. Cars that emit 120 to 180 grams of CO2 per kilometer will pay about £1.50 (about $2.28) an hour, while the cleanest cars emitting less than 120 g/km receive a discount and pay just £1.20 (about $1.82) an hour.
In order to get the right parking fee, drivers must register their cars online. Afterwards, they will receive the "Smart Card" they will use at meters to pay parking fees. There is another option to pay by mobile phone. All you have to do is enter your vehicle registration number into the meter. The car's emission class will be checked against a city database and you will get the right parking fee.