Richmond parking fees

The Lib Dem dominated Richmond Council has decided to charge higher parking fees for high polluting vehicles. This means a family with two such cars could pay up to £750 a year - three times the normal parking fees.

The council says it is not about raising tax and their aim is revenue neutral. But the decision will hit hard large families who need such cars to go about their daily business. High parking fees will inevitably force not only 4*4s but larger people carriers out of the borough but less "gas-guzzlers" should not come as a result of extortionate parking fees. A large family doesn't fit into a smaller car and that will lead them to buy more than one car which will cause as much CO2 emissions as a bigger car. Also, a full "gas-guzzler" is better than any other vehicles occupied by one person.

There is no denial that 4*4s pollute more than other cars but the final impact depends on the whole way of life and the use of each vehicle. The council is not right to force people to prefere only certain types of cars but should leave its residents a choice how they will lessen the impact their lifestyle has on the environment.