Economy

Govt unveiling plans to STOP sales of petrol and diesel cars TODAY

Govt unveiling plans to STOP sales of petrol and diesel cars TODAY

No new petrol or diesel cars will be sold in the United Kingdom after 2040, the Government is to announce on Wednesday in its delayed plan to crackdown on air pollution.

This month, Volvo became the first big traditional automaker to set a date for phasing out vehicles powered exclusively by the internal combustion engine by saying all its auto models launched after 2019 will be electric or hybrids.

The pollution hotspots are predominantly on A-roads but also include stretches of two motorways - the M4 near London and the M32 in Bristol.

BMW has announced plans for an electric Mini to be constructed, while Volvo has also progressed towards building cleaner cars.

Gove has previously criticised the European Union testing regime over how it enforces emissions standards.

The new strategy urges local authorities to attempt to reduce emissions at first by fitting the most polluting diesel vehicles with filters, changing road lay-outs and removing speed humps.

Campaigners want government-funded and mandated clean air zones, with charges for the most-polluting vehicles to enter areas with high air pollution, included in the plans, as well as a diesel scrappage scheme.

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"The Liberal Democrats have called for all new diesel sales to end by 2025 and a scrappage scheme to help drivers convert to greener vehicles".

Within the draft of the plan, which was launched for consultation on 5 May, Defra stopped short of endorsing a scrappage scheme, but it did ask for views on the proposal.

But ministers have been wary of being seen to "punish" drivers of diesel cars, who, it argues, bought the vehicles in good faith after being encouraged to by the last Labour government on the basis they produced lower carbon emissions.

The last United Kingdom scrappage scheme launched in 2009 cost the tax payer £400 million.

But that is thought to have been ruled out as too costly and would have provoked a backlash from motorists - including so-called "white van man" - and Tory backbenchers.

It is estimated that 48 of the most polluted roads are in London. Others have been identified in Birmingham, Derby, Leeds, Nottingham, Southampton, Bristol, Bolton, Manchester, Bury, Coventry, Newcastle, Sheffield, Belfast, Cardiff and Middlesborough. Instead of properly fighting this silent killer the government has flip-flopped, offering tax breaks for cars that they are now banning.


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