Bristol Greens: road tax rise “not a panacea” to city congestion problem

Green Party Councillor Charlie Bolton says the new road tax rise from Saturday won’t solve the city’s traffic congestion problem.

Under the new tax some new zero emissions cars will cost their drivers an additional £310.

But the Southville councillor described the potential positive impact of the tax rise as, ‘debatable’ and said a rise in road tax for new cars will not have a decisive effect on the problem.

‘It doesn’t necessarily follow that putting car tax up will make that big a difference – it’s not a panacea,’ said the leader of the Green Group at Bristol’s City Council.

He argued that more solutions need to be found, including cleaner cars, better public transport and making it easier for those wishing to cycle or walk in the city.


Bristol Green Party councillor Charlie Bolton Credit: Duncan Chisholm
Bristol Green Party Councillor Charlie Bolton Credit: Duncan Chisholm

Bristol’s congestion is such a concern that in October last year Mayor Marvin Rees promised a new task force to combat the problem.

The tax rises coming into force from Saturday 1 April mean that, according to the RAC, all new vehicles with a list price of over £40,000 – including zero emission cars – will attract an additional rate of £310, payable each year for five years from the end of the first vehicle licence.

RAC spokesman Rod Dennis explained that the tax rise could even discourage some drivers who want to help reduce their carbon footprint by opting for cars with lower emissions:

So some Bristolians might decide to try a new way to travel around the city:

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