Great news: the government has promised to end the sale of new petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2030 – ten years earlier than planned. This means that from 2030, new cars and vans will no longer be able to pump out large amounts of fossil fuel emissions.
Most new vehicles will need to be 100% electric. Some cleaner types of new hybrid vehicles may still be allowed to be purchased until 2035. Owners of fossil fuel vehicles bought prior to 2030 will still be able to drive them, but over time as people renew their vehicles more and more electric cars will replace the old diesel and petrol ones on our roads.
This landmark announcement signals the end of the road for polluting cars and vans and a historic turning point on climate action.
As part of Boris Johnson's green #TenPointPlan, the government announced it will bring forward the ban on petrol and diesel cars from 2040 to 2030.
— Greenpeace UK (@GreenpeaceUK) November 18, 2020
Ending the sale of these polluting vehicles over the next decade will significantly reduce climate-wrecking emissions, and help to clean up toxic air pollution on our streets, which has a disproportionate impact on less affluent communities and certain communities of colour.
We need to make sure any action is backed up by support and incentives in the right places so everyone can benefit from this policy.We also need a wider shift away from private vehicle use towards more public transport, walking and cycling. While we need to shift all vehicles away from fossil fuels, cars are no panacea and ultimately society will be a better place, and our climate will be safer if there are less cars on our roads overall.
We’ll have an in-depth article on the announcement and what comes next very soon. In the meantime, Greenpeace UK’s head of politics Rebecca Newsom has published a reaction to the government’s plan in the Guardian.