From 2040 UK plans petrol and diesel vehicle sales ban

This vehicle sales ban when implemented will not include any hybrids which is part of a wider plan to tackle air pollution across the United Kingdom.

The ban in the UK will put to an end in sales of both petrol and diesel vans and cars from 2040 onwards. This plays a massive part in the move to attempt to tackle air pollution.

Future of vehicles

The ban is following an earlier quality draft report published by the Department for Environment and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) in May this year. Michael Gove the environmental secretary will publish the full air quality plan following months of legal battles and consultation.

 

For some time now the motor industry has slowly been moving in the direction of increased electrification in vehicles. A poll done by Auto Express consisting of 5,700 motorists conducted before the ban was announced shows that 82% believes sales of plug-in (electric and plug-in hybrid) cars will have overtaken conventional petrol and diesel vans by 2040- 64% think it will have happened by 2030.

 

The proposal

Clean air zones are being proposed by the Government up and down the UK in high pollution areas however charging drivers of very high polluting vehicles is yet to be ruled out. Also, a targeted diesel scrappage scheme is also potentially on the cards for the future. Where there are local pollution hotspots councils will now be required by March 2018 layout their plans and finalise them for the end of the year.  Granted a majority of the projects will be funded by the Government, diesel drivers could be expected to put their hands into their own pockets to contribute to some of the costs. Additionally, the suggested new laws mean manufactures found to using ‘defeat’ devices on vehicles in order to cheat the emissions tests could face both civil and criminal charges, with fines of up to £50,000 for every single device installed.

 

Health implications of poor air quality

Its estimated by the Government that poor air quality poses the largest risk to public health in the UK, costing the economy an astonishing £2.7 billion in loss of productivity. In order to be able to combat this health epidemic, the Government now wants to accelerate the uptake of green vehicles across the country.

 

Government funding

There will be a £3 billion fund dedicated for improving air quality that local authorities can dip into. From the fund £290 million will go towards low emissions taxis.

Furthermore, councils will also be given a green bus fun to be able convert all existing public transport to meet the new regulations and contribute a further £1.2billion towards walking and cycling schemes in addition to £100 million to tackle roadside pollution.

Moreover, £255 million will be invested into changing road infrastructure. This road layout changes will include speed limits, speed bumps and roundabouts in addition to reprogramming traffic lights. On top of this another £100 million will be invested towards improving the UK’s charging infrastructure.

While its questionable if this amount of money is enough to suffice and bring UK’s charging infrastructure up to standard by 2040. A spokesperson said “We will be ready by 2040. Infrastructure is growing rapidly. Five years ago, there were around 3,000 public charging points, today there are over 13,000- and there’s a huge increase in home charging.”

It’s also important to note a majority of the charging takes place at home. Chargemaster quotes “We see around 1000,000 home charging sessions per week, compared to 5,000 public charging sessions.” However, Chargemaster appreciates the fact that not all drivers will have access to home charging, so it will start to roll out 25 rapid charging stations per month and this is expected to increase in the future.

 

Private sector funding

“Though funding from the Government is always welcome, the private sector is taking the lead here and we will be ready by 2040.”

However, the chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufactures and Traders, Mike Hawes, said that it isn’t enough for just the private sector to contribute. He believes what is needed is for “all the different stakeholders (to contribute.) Energy companies, distribution networks, government and manufactures. One of the major frustrations for manufactures is they have been putting vehicles on the market is that the infrastructure has not kept pace.

 

Still undecided?

Here is a list of pros and cons of investing into an electric vehicle. The suitability of the vehicle varies from person to person depending on the vehicles function and what types of journeys it will be doing.

By Lucy Murdoch

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