Kit Malthouse, a Conservative member of the London Assembly, did not give us the real picture in his letter last week headlined 'Boris tax freeze is just the ticket'.

He claimed that Mayor Boris Johnson was doing a good job by freezing City Hall's council tax share while avoiding the surcharge on people driving large gas-guzzling cars in London.

The reality is that Boris Johnson's scrapping of the higher rate congestion charge for gas-guzzlers and his abandonment of the western extension of the congestion zone will cost Londoners dear. The money he has lost by these actions is being made up by increases in bus and Tube fares.

This will cost a typical family about £180 a year. Furthermore, the increase will especially hit poorer families, whereas scrapping the gasguzzlers tax will help the better off.

Boris Johnson's actions will also be bad for the environment. Scrapping the gas-guzzler tax and the western congestion zone will increase air pollution which, according to the Greater London Authority, kills about 1,000 Londoners a year.

Johnson's disregard for Londoners' health is further demonstrated by his decision to scrap the 'Low Emission Zone' - a scheme specifically designed to reduce air pollution.

After eight years of progress on transport and environment, we are now seeing regressive policies. This is why it is so important that there are Green Party members on the London Assembly to challenge the mayor's wrong-headed policies.


Green Party parliamentary candidate for Ealing Central and Acton