You may be interested to hear that change is afoot when it comes to car parking costs. Local authorities have now been given the technology to inflict higher parking tariffs on vehicles that produce greater levels of CO2 emissions. On the flip side, drivers of ultra-low emission vehicles, such as electric cars, could escape a tariff altogether.
Although this new tariff is unlikely to have a significant effect on the courier industry, as generally courier drivers do not use car parks when delivering packages, it is likely to raise awareness about environmentally-friendly engines. It marks a step forward in the government’s attempt to tackle vehicular CO2 emissions.
The Flexi-Tariff System: How Does it Work?
ATP Skidata is a parking technology business that is behind the initiative to place a flexi-tariff system in car parks nationwide. This company has several clients across the UK and therefore the scheme has the potential to affect millions of vehicles and businesses throughout the country.
The system uses high tech cameras that are set to record number plates by means of the automatic number plate recognition (ANPR). As a vehicle, be it a car, truck, van or motorbike, enters the car park, the registration is logged. This registration number is then sent to a database that has all of the relevant CO2 emission information. The driver is charged accordingly depending on how high or low the emissions related to the relevant vehicle are.
Why Use This System?
With the ever-increasing amount of traffic on our roads, and the raised awareness of the environmental impact of CO2 emissions, we in the UK cannot go on as we are. Issues related to our environment need to be addressed and this is one way of doing that. Drivers in charge of vehicles that are more fuel efficient will be rewarded by paying lower parking tariffs, particularly when they are using the car parks in towns and cities.
The extra money received from the high emission vehicles using specific car parks will go towards offsetting the negative environmental impact of the car park itself, which is yet another added bonus of having the tariffs in place. Individual car parks using the ATP Skidata system will be in control of setting their own targets according to their own environmental policy.
With this clear discouragement of older petrol and diesel engines with bad emissions records, surely it is only a matter of time before electric charging points become commonplace in the country’s car parks as an incentive to drive more environmentally-friendly vehicles.
Norman Dulwich is a correspondent for Courier Exchange, the world's largest neutral trading hub for same day courier work in the express freight exchange industry. Over 4,000 fleet operators and couriers are networked together through their website, trading jobs and capacity in a safe 'wholesale' environment.