Climate Action

MPs call for petrol and diesel ban to be brought forward to 2032

A new report by the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee has called for the highly anticipated ban of sales of petrol and diesel vehicles in the UK to be brought forward to 2032.

  • 19 October 2018
  • Rachel Cooper

A new report by the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee (BEIS) has called for the highly anticipated sales ban of petrol and diesel vehicles in the UK to be brought forward to 2032.

The original ban for zero emission vehicles was set at 2040, but when announced it was met with heavy criticism. A report by Greenpeace Belgium and German Aerospace Centre found that the deadline for the EU needed to be brought forward to 2030 to ensure that countries kept to the target set at the Paris Agreement.

The new proposed target by the BEIS would align better with what is needed for clear and important climate action, set out in the recent IPCC report.  

Rachel Reeves MP, Chair of the BEIS said: "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.”

The report found that limited provision of electric vehicle charging points was a great barrier in growing the UK EV market. As a result, the BEIS have called on the Government to take charge in ensuring EV charging points are provided nationwide.

The UK is already behind on this important target. Norway has set their target at 2025, and Ireland and the Netherlands have agreed to ban sales by 2030. 

Morten Thaysen, clean air campaigner at Greenpeace, said: “The IPCC made it very clear that we’re now playing catch up to limit irreversible damage from climate change. UK emissions from transport have reduced just 2% since 1990, and a growing chorus of advisers in climate, energy and industry are saying a phase out date of 2040 is too late. We need 100% electric car and van sales by 2030 if the government is serious about meeting its obligations under the Paris agreement."

Photograph: David Holt