The internal combustion engine is going the way of the dodo, with the UK joining with California as the world’s the leading car markets accept the inevitable and abandon petrol and diesel cars.
The UK Government has announced that the sale of new cars and vans running on traditional fuels will be banned by 2030.
All vehicles with any tailpipe emissions – that means hybrids – will be banned from by 2035.
According to the UK Department for Transport (DfT), new cars and vans can be sold between 2030 and 2035 if they have the capability to drive a significant distance with zero emissions (for example, plug-in hybrids or full hybrids).
The government has aggressively brought forward the moves by five years, and with the change in the US Presidency, the transport sector expects the rapid switch to a 2030 low-emission transport target to become universal in the developed world.
Almost. In 2030 Australian will be standing still, blinking into the sun; “What just happened!”
The UK government predicts the investment will improve air quality in towns and cities and spur economic growth right across the UK.
The DfT has underpinned the move with $3.3 billion to support greater uptake of zero emission vehicles for greener car journeys.
It includes $2.35 billion to accelerate the roll-out of chargepoints for electric vehicles in homes, streets across the UK and on motorways across England, so people can more easily and conveniently charge their cars.
The government has also pledged $1.0 billion in grants for those buying zero or ultra-low emission vehicles to make them cheaper to buy and incentivise more people to make the transition.
Green number plates are set to be introduced this month to increase awareness of cleaner vehicles on the roads and help local authorities bring in local incentives such as cheaper parking and cost-free entry into zero-emission zones.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said that bringing forward the timing by five years could create 40,000 extra jobs by 2030, and will see emissions reductions equivalent to taking more than 4 million cars off the road.
“The UK is going further and faster than any other major economy to decarbonise transport, harnessing the power of clean, green technology to end the UK’s contribution to climate change by 2050,” he said.
Changes of this scale and speed, along with all the other decarbonising initiatives being planned in progressive nations, will trigger new industrial revolution.
Australia will have to sprint hard, or be left in the (coal) dust.
One opportunity we have is to make electric bikes a strong focus of our decarbonisation strategy, a move that the UK and others have missed.
Recent economic analysis is showing that financial incentives for electric bikes are vastly more cost-effective than paying drivers to replace their fossil fuel cars with low emission cars.
This article was made possible by the support of Bicycle Network's members who enable us to make bike riding better in Australia.