A campaign group protesting against Glasgow’s low emission zone (LEZ) has accused the council of lying about air pollution in the city and said businesses were now needlessly suffering.

The LEZ Fightback Campaign claimed Glasgow City Council was profiteering from the introduction of the zone and said it was ignoring scientific evidence regarding pollution levels.

It said 5,933 penalty charge notices had been issued to motorists driving into the LEZ in July, after just 2,922 were issued in June, when the scheme was launched.

The LEZ affects any HGV that is not Euro-6 standard.

A petition by the group put before Judge Lady Poole at the Court of Session has now been allowed to proceed to a full hearing.

Campaign leader and local businessman William Paton, said: “The data which drove council’s decision to proceed with phase two of the LEZ was over half a decade out of date and based on statistics taken pre-Covid, pre-hybrid working and most importantly, pre-phase one of the LEZ.

“Phase one addressed the largest and only significant polluters – the buses – but now they’re completely compliant which means as a city we have already met the council’s stated air quality objectives.”

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Paton, who runs an accident repair centre, added that there was a “huge environmental impact to consider” as well: “In similar schemes around the world, far more people reverted into more harmful petrol vehicles than anticipated, as opposed to changing to electric and hybrid,” he said.

“The people who have these older diesel vehicles, don’t have the funds available for fancy new electric and hybrid vehicles, and when you consider that every petrol vehicle replacing a diesel will contribute 25% more CO2 per kilometre, the impact will be enormous.”

A Glasgow city council spokesman said any legal action would be “vigorously contested”.

The spokesman said: “The court did not previously comment on the specific grounds of Paton’s petition and made no finding on air quality levels - rather the petition was allowed to proceed to a full hearing where its claims will be fully examined before any decision is made.

“The council is satisfied that it correctly assessed available air quality data when taking the decision to implement LEZ Phase two.

“Glasgow’s LEZ came into force this year to address decades of harmful air pollution in the city centre,” he added.

A procedural hearing for the case is scheduled for 8 September and a judicial review is due to take place on 17 October.