New, tighter standards for non-road mobile machinery (NRMM) were set to be introduced on 1st September 2020.
However, the coronavirus lockdown has had an impact on supply chains, making it more difficult for construction companies to prepare their machinery for the new standards. Challenges include delays to the retrofitting of existing machinery and interruptions to the supply of new equipment, the mayor’s office acknowledged.
In response, there will be a new six-month exemption period from the new Low Emission Zone standards to support companies as they work to comply with the standards. This will run from September 2020 until the end of February 2021. The existing standards, in place since 2015, will continue to apply.
The current standards are that machines must meet EU Stage IIIA emissions limits throughout London, and they must meet at least Stage IIIB in the Central Activity Zone and Canary Wharf areas.
From the 1st September 2020, all machinery in the Central Activity Zone (CAZ), Canary Wharf Areas and, for the first time, opportunity areas (OA) will need to meet at least Stage IV. All machinery on major development sites in the rest of London should meet at least Stage IIIB.
These standards will go up to Stage IV throughout London in 2025.
Deputy mayor for environment and energy, Shirley Rodrigues, said: “As London recovers from the coronavirus pandemic and building restarts at full capacity, we’re working closely with the construction industry to drive down emissions. The NRMM Low Emission Zone is the first of its kind in the world and will ensure that we reduce emissions from machinery on construction sites. However Covid-19 has created inevitable disruptions to suppliers of new construction machinery and retrofit services. That’s why the mayor has granted a six-month exemption period to give site operators more time to prepare machinery for the new standards and support London’s green recovery.”