Should the ban on new petrol and diesel cars be moved forward?
A parliamentary committee wants the phasing out of sales of new fossil fuel powered vehicles moved forward to 2032.
Government targets are described as ‘vague and unambitious’ by the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee which prompted their suggested reappraisal of the 2040 deadline for the abatement of new fossil fuel vehicle sales.
In the report – Electric Vehicles: Driving the Transition, zero-emission vehicles targets should be clearer, more precise and moved forward by eight years.
The big recommendations they made were:
- Greater provision of charging points to grow the EV market
- Financial and technical help for local authorities to develop the vehicle charging infrastructure
- Greater tax incentives for zero-emissions vehicles
- Maintaining the Plug-in grant level after November 2018
Rachel Reeves, chair of the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee said:
“Electric vehicles are increasingly popular and present exciting opportunities for the UK to develop an internationally competitive EV industry and reduce our carbon emissions”.
“But, for all the rhetoric of the UK becoming a world leader in EVs, the reality is that the Government’s deeds do not match the ambitions of their words”.
“The IPCC report was clear on the need to encourage changes in consumer behaviour, including increasing the switch to electric vehicles, to help decarbonise our economy”.
“But the UK Government’s targets on zero-emissions vehicles are unambitious and vague, giving little clarity or incentive to industry or the consumer to invest in electric cars. If we are serious about being EV world leaders, the Government must come forward with a target of new sales of cars and vans to be zero emission by 2032”.
“Our EV charging infrastructure is simply not fit for purpose. We cannot expect consumers to overcome ‘range anxiety’ and switch to electric vehicles if they cannot be confident of finding convenient, reliable points to regularly charge their cars. The Government cannot simply will the ends and leave local government, or private companies, to deliver the means. The Government needs to get a grip and lead on coordinating the financial support and technical know-how necessary for local authorities to promote this infrastructure and help ensure that electric cars are an attractive option for consumers”.
“The Department for Transport’s slashing of the Plug-in Grant scheme drives the incentives of buying an electric vehicle into reverse. Cutting support is a perverse way to encourage drivers to move to non-polluting cars. This is only the latest sign of the Government’s inconsistent approach to developing the market for electric vehicles”.
“The Committee on Climate Change has made clear in their judgements on the Clean Growth Strategy and the ‘Road to Zero’ strategy that these plans do not go far enough to tackle transport emissions, putting the UK’s long-term carbon reduction targets at risk. A more joined-up and consistent approach is needed from Government if the UK is to seize the business opportunities of electric vehicles and deliver carbon emissions reductions”.
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