Laws requiring all new cars sold in the UK to have zero emissions should be brought forward from 2040 to 2030, according to a report by the Climate Change Commission (CCC).
The measure would help the UK reduce carbon emissions to nearly zero by 2050, according to the report, which has also called for substantial investment to improve electric vehicle charging infrastructure in the UK.
The CCC says the governments current plans to require all new cars sold after 2040 to have zero emissions – banning the sale of new gasoline and diesel cars – are too soft.
Ensuring that all cars and vans in the UK are electric by 2050 will require all sales to be purely battery electric by 2035 at the latest, according to the report – but it would be “desirable” to bring that goal forward to 2030 if technology allows.
The CCC estimates that alternative fuel vehicles should be cheaper to buy than gasoline and diesel by 2030, and offer substantial reductions in operating costs.
The report notes that accelerating the requirement that all new cars sold be zero-emission will require heavy investment in the recharging network, and says the government “must continue to support the strengthening of the recharging infrastructure, even for drivers who do not have access to off-street parking.
There are currently around 21,000 public loaders in the UK, but the report estimates that 210,000 will be needed in towns and cities, along with 3,500 fast and ultra fast loaders near motorways.
A 2018 report published by the House of Commons Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee described the governments initial target date for new legislation as “vague and unambitious”, and criticised the relative unpreparedness of the British road network for a change from conventional fueling methods.