Ireland is to ban the sale of petrol and diesel cars from 2030 as part of its new Climate Action Plan published this week.

The Plan includes bringing 950,000 electric vehicles onto the road network; installing a nationwide charging network and introducing an electric vehicle scrappage scheme.

The Plan was led by Minister Richard Bruton, to give Irish people a “cleaner, safer and more sustainable future”. At a time when the country should be radically reducing its reliance on carbon, he said Ireland’s greenhouse gas emissions had been rising rapidly.

The country is 85% dependent on fossil fuels, and has a short window of opportunity to reverse the trend, which, said Bruton, meant “changing the way we heat our homes, the way we travel and the way we power our country”.

The Plan sets out 180 actions covering every relevant sector. For transport it includes plans to:

*Accelerate the penetration of EV into sales of cars and vans on the route to reach 100% by 2030, so that 950,000 electric vehicles will be on the road by 2030. This means approximately one third of all vehicles sold during the decade will be Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV) or Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV)

*Make growth less transport intensive through better planning, remote working and modal shift

* Increase the renewable biofuel content of motor fuels

* Set targets for the conversion of public fleets

The Climate Action Plan puts Ireland on a trajectory to meet its 2030 target for carbon emissions, which is consistent with achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050. The Plan commits to evaluating in detail the changes required to adopt a more ambitious commitment of net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The new Climate Action Act will include a 2050 target in law.