2030 ban on petrol and diesel car sales to be confirmed

Report suggests that the Government’s ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars will be officially moved forward to 2030 in the coming days

The UK’s ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars is set to be officially brought forward a decade from 2040 to 2030. The ban would include hybrid cars but the suggestion is that new plug-in hybrids will not be banned until 2035. 

The Government has consulted on bringing the 2040 ban on the sale of new internal combustion engined cars forward to 2035 or 2030 and now the Financial Times reports that an announcement is imminent, with the Prime Minister Boris Johnson favouring the earlier option. Pure electric cars currently represent less than 7% of the UK car market but they are growing strongly in popularity and this move will only serve to accelerate their uptake. 

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A recent study published by Greenpeace UK claims a 2030 deadline would lead to the creation of 32,000 more jobs by that year, compared to if the ban were to be moved to 2035. The UK’s GDP, meanwhile, would rise by a further 0.2 per cent – equivalent to £4.2 billion – if a date of 2030 were chosen.

Employment increases and higher levels of economic activity resulting from the acceleration of the ban could also provide a £1.9 billion net increase in revenue for the Government by 2030, the study claims.

The report – written by economic analysis firm Cambridge Econometrics on behalf of Greenpeace – assesses the impact a 2030 ban would have on consumer spending, emissions, Government revenues, the car industry and the wider UK economy compared with a 2035 ban.

It’s understood that the 2030 date is favoured by ministers as it would allow the Government to more easily meet emission targets. Implementing the ban in 2030 rather than 2035 would create thousands of new jobs directly linked to the faster transition to EVs, the report says. Some would be in relation to energy, battery manufacturing and a mass roll-out of charging infrastructure, but the majority would be in service industries such as retail, entertainment and leisure.

Increased economic activity is expected as a result of the lower running costs associated with EV ownership, as drivers would have more money to spare. Reduced demand for imported oil, and increased consumption of electricity generated in the UK, could also add money to national coffers.

Furthermore, the report suggests phasing out petrol and diesel cars early will allow the UK to position itself in such a way as to capture a larger share of both domestic and overseas car markets.

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Doug Parr, director of UK policy at Greenpeace, said: “Now more than ever we need bold Government policies that create new jobs and economic growth, whilst driving the UK forward on climate action. Here… is one that will do just that, while making the UK a world leader in electric vehicle manufacturing. Delivered with the right policies, a 2030 phase-out really would be win-win all round.”

The analysis comes despite warnings from the UK car industry that moving the date of the ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars forward to 2030 would be “devastating”.

What kind of car should you buy today? We examine the petrol, diesel, electric and hybrid options here…

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