The Times (p6) says transport adviser Professor John Whitelegg is about to submit a report urging the minister to introduce tough taxation, as forecasts predict a 30 per cent increase in car use by 2010.
The report, written for Friends of the Earth, claims drivers wanting to use city centres during peak times and company car owners need to be targetted to reduce traffic by one sixth by 2010.
Mr Whitelegg, transport adviser to Mr Prescott when Labour was in opposition, said yesterday: 'If we want to be absolutely certain of achieving traffic reduction we need a fiscal framework.'
Trials are already underway in Leicester to test whether charges of up to£10 a day will deter drivers from entering the city at peak times. Cars account for 82 per cent of vehicle miles in the UK.