Cardiff council leaders have, as expected, rejected proposals to include a charging clean air zone as part of the city's plans to cut pollution.

The council’s cabinet members turned down the proposal last week in favour of a plan to spend £32m to upgrade the city’s buses and taxis to Euro-6 standard, as well as improving traffic flow in the city centre.

The cabinet’s decision sees Cardiff become the fourth council after Nottingham, Derby and Southampton, to reject the CAZ model as a way of bringing NO2 emissions to permitted levels.

Cardiff council said its decision had been guided by UK Government Joint Air Quality Unit guidance, which states that a charging clean air zone should only be implemented "if non-charging alternatives are found to be inefficient to bring compliance in the shortest time possible".

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The council’s £32m programme will include replacing older buses with electric buses, introducing a bus retrofitting scheme, making major changes to Castle Street, Westgate and the city centre loop, and a funding scheme to help taxi firms upgrade their fleets.

Councillor Caro Wild, cabinet member for strategic planning and transport, said: "The council will be calling on Welsh Government for the necessary funding to bring these measures into place as soon as possible.”

RHA policy director Duncan Buchanan said Cardiff is one of a growing number of councils to resist the option to impose a charging CAZ.

“We are aware of a number of other councils who also don’t want to introduce CAZ into their cities and that is because they recognise the damage that will do to local businesses,” Buchanan told