Britain To Ban Fossil Fuel Vehicles By 2040

Hot on the heels of France's announcement to ban all gasoline-powered vehicles by 2040, the United Kingdom will follow suit, with a plan to end sales of all gas and diesel vehicles by 2040.

Nissan UK put out the following statement: "As the pioneer of electric vehicles, and having sold more than any other company in the world, we welcome plans that encourage people to switch to low or zero emission vehicles".

"We can't carry on with diesel and petrol cars", Environment Secretary Michael Gove said on BBC Radio 4's "Today" show.

Banning new petrol and diesel vehicles by 2040 will not deal with the current "public health emergency" caused by illegal air pollution, the Government has been warned.

Asked if there was no alternative to more wind farms and nuclear power energy stations, the Scot replied: "There is no alternative to embracing new technology". According to analysis from Bloomberg New Energy Finance, almost 80 percent of cars purchased in the U.K.by 2040 would be electric under existing policies.

Make no mistake-gas- and diesel-powered cars have an expiration date, it's just further away than you might've thought.

"While nearly 59,000 new green cars were sold in the United Kingdom a year ago, which was up 27%, clearly hybrid was a big part of that".

Projections from electric auto charging firm Chargemaster suggest that one million plug-in hybrid or electric cars will be on our roads by 2022, at which point they will account for 10% of all sales, and that by 2027 registrations of such vehicles will account for around 30% of new auto sales.

The ban on petrol and diesel cars as well as vans follows a similar proposal by the French government, and will also include hybrid vehicles that have an electric motor and a petrol or diesel engine.

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London mayor Sadiq Khan said the commitment to phase out sales of diesel cars was "welcome", but "Londoners suffering right now simply can't afford to wait until 2040".

Brokers see price parity between electric and non -electric vehicles as early as next year when Tesla's ramp-up hits full swing.

Gove said air quality had improved significantly in recent decades, with NO2 levels down by 50% in 15 years. "Until we get more details, it's really hard to understand what the implications really are", said Al Bedwell, a director at LMC Automotive.

From around 2020, town halls will also be allowed to levy extra charges on diesel drivers using the UK's 81 most polluted routes if air quality fails to improve.

Plug-in cars are still only about one percent of all United Kingdom vehicle sales, yet the country is one of only a handful worldwide to have more than 100,000 plug-in automobiles on the road.

The government report suggested tax changes for new diesel vehicles will be introduced in the Autumn to fund the plans, which local authorities have until December 2018 to finalize.

Though the measure could lead to dramatic cuts in fuel consumption, the measure does little to address the oil demand from airlines and commercial vehicles, he added.

"Even in people's houses, they'd probably need to have fast charging for three or four cars as many houses have, which'd require a total rewiring of the house".

  • Ronnie Bowen