The Low Emission Zone (LEZ) in Oxford aims to promote the use of cleaner, greener vehicles. This initiative, led by Oxford City Council and Oxfordshire County Council, helps reduce pollution and improve air quality.

Developed through extensive assessment and consultation, including with bus operators, the LEZ is a result of a City-County feasibility study focusing on minimising vehicle emissions.

Download the Low Emission Zone map for buses

Affected vehicles

All local bus services within the LEZ must use buses meeting the Euro V emission standard for nitrogen oxides (NOx). This includes new engines or retrofitted vehicles that meet the Euro V NOx standard.


Enforcement is through a Traffic Regulation Condition (TRC) issued by the Traffic Commissioner. This TRC applies to licences of bus operators in central Oxford. You can view the full TRC text from page 21 in the document below:

Download the Traffic Regulation Condition

For more details on local enforcement, refer to the Bus Operator Guidance (see below).


Exemptions are available in specific cases:

  • for low frequency services
  • for Euro IV buses used between October 2012 and January 2013, continuing until December 2015 [Exemption 1c]
  • two additional exemptions for withdrawn services to facilitate the procurement of Euro V vehicles

For comprehensive exemption details, see the Traffic Regulation Condition or the Bus Operator Guidance:

Download the Bus Operator Guidance

Approved vehicles

All buses with a "10-plate" or newer are automatically approved. The database below includes details of Euro IV buses under exemption 1c, and buses re-engineered or retrofitted to Euro V, in addition to pre "10-plate" Euro Vs:

Approved Bus Database

We continue to assess traffic emissions, considering extending the LEZ to other vehicle classes to further reduce traffic emissions' impact on air quality and greenhouse gas emissions.

Contact the Air Quality Team

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