Edinburgh Low Emission Zone

Why Edinburgh needs a LEZ:

To protect public health and improve air quality, City of Edinburgh Council introduced a Low Emission Zone (LEZ) in May 2022.

The City of Edinburgh Council’s Low Emission Zone (LEZ) is designed to improve air quality and protect public health by reducing harmful emissions from road transport.

The LEZ will target the most polluting vehicles and is one tool to help Edinburgh to meet its legal obligations to improve air quality and address climate change

The Council is committed to delivering greener and healthier transport across the city and the LEZ aligns with other strategies including the City Mobility Plan, 2030 Climate Strategy and Local Air Quality Management Plan.

LEZ boundary:

The LEZ boundary circles the city centre from:

  • Tollcross in the south
  • to Palmerston Place in the west
  • along Queen Street in the New Town
  • to Picardy Place
  • around Abbeyhill and onto Holyrood Road
  • along the Pleasance in the east
  • before heading back along the Meadows to Tollcross.

Next steps:

CEC will install fixed automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras at key entry and exit points to the LEZ. CEC will also have mobile enforcement vehicles that will be equipped with ANPR cameras to make sure that the most polluting vehicles are deterred from entering the LEZ.

Supporting IT system will use the information gathered through the ANPR to check if the vehicle meets the LEZ emission standards, using data from the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA).

CEC will install signs at all entry and exit points to mark the LEZ. These will be in place before we start issuing fines on 1 June 2024.

CEC will be changing some road junctions, including Tollcross and Morrison Street, to allow traffic to move around the city centre without having to enter the LEZ. This work will be conducted before 1 June 2024.

CEC will share the progress of the installation of all LEZ cameras, signage and network changes on social media and through regular reports to the Council’s Transport and Environment Committee.

Previous reports and consultations:

The City of Edinburgh Council carried out public consultations on its LEZ proposals in 2019 and 2021, resulting in over 5,000 responses. From this, the Council developed a preferred LEZ scheme. This was based on previous consultation and scientific air quality modelling that indicated a larger city centre boundary option including all vehicles would be most effective at reducing harmful emissions across the city. This option was taken to statutory consultation during summer 2021.

Results from the 2021 consultation indicated that statutory consultees generally supported:

  • the larger city centre boundary (option 1), including neighbouring local authorities and members of transport and logistic organisations
  • the two-year grace period for residents and non-residents, including representatives of the bus and coach sector and members of transport and logistic organisations.

The Council received 26 objections during the statutory notice period and responded to each of the objections, before submitting the Scheme to Scottish Ministers.

For further information:

Full details regarding Edinburgh’s LEZ is available at https://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/lez

All evidence relating to Edinburgh’s LEZ development is available here.

For Edinburgh LEZ enquiries otherwise not covered in the above links, please contact: low.emission.zone@edinburgh.gov.uk

Check your vehicle