A cross party group of MPs and Lords have called on the Government to adopt stronger proposals on air quality than the ones it outlined earlier this week.
Following publication of the Government’s Air Quality Plan, which would ban the sale of new petrol and diesel cars from 2040, a letter, signed by 119 parliamentarians has called for introduction of the provisions of the Clean Air Bill tabled by Labour MP Geraint Davies.
Provisions in the Clear Air Bill, which aim to go further than the Air Quality Plan, include:
• restrictions on access for the most polluting vehicles in urban areas;
• targeted diesel scrappage schemes;
• new powers for local authorities and the Environment Agency to enforce clean air zones and combat “idling”;
• incentives for people to switch to cleaner alternatives in all modes of transport;
• reliable, real-time emissions testing;
• rapid development of infrastructure of electric car charging points (at car parks in preference to petrol stations), the main constraint on increasing the number of electric cars on the road;
• action on air quality at ports and airports; and
• an air quality fiscal strategy.
ACS has previously provided both written and oral evidence to the Government on plans to increase the provision of electric vehicle (EV) charging points, raising concerns about any plans that would mandate the installation of charging points on petrol forecourts, citing the significant cost and space required.
Additionally, evidence from the Department of Transport in 2015 has shown that 95% of private EV owners reported charging at home daily or weekly compared to 26% who reported charging at work and 12% who reported using public charging.
ACS chief executive James Lowman (above) said: “We welcome the debate on clean air and the future of electric vehicle charging, which will be an important part of the changing face of petrol forecourts in future. Many forecourts will opt to install electric charging points as they feel it is the right move for their business, but we have serious concerns about forcing these businesses to install expensive EV facilities when the demand for public charging is low.
“We will continue to work with the Government on ensuring that electric vehicle charging facilities are provided in the right places for consumers.”