The UK Prime Minister Delays Net Zero Climate Action Target and Extends Ban on Petrol and Diesel Cars
UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has announced an extension of the net zero climate action target, pushing the set target from 2030 to 2035.
The delay in the target has been met with mixed responses from environmentalists, auto manufacturers, industry leaders, and political parties.
Auto manufacturers, who have already invested billions in electric vehicles (EVs), criticized the decision, stating that it would slow down the greener car manufacturing process and disrupt the supply chain.
Sunak justified the extension by stating that it would help alleviate the financial burden on struggling households.
The UK’s 2030 target was introduced as part of the country’s ‘green revolution,’ aiming to increase the proportion of electric vehicles sold and reach 100% by 2035.
In a recent announcement, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has decided to delay a part of the net zero climate action target, extending the set target from 2030 to 2035. This move has garnered mixed responses from various stakeholders, including environmentalists, auto manufacturers, industry leaders, and political parties.
The extension of the net zero target aims to keep the consent of the British people towards the process of transitioning to a net zero economy. Sunak emphasized the importance of minimizing carbon emissions and achieving the zero carbon emission target by 2050. However, this decision has faced criticism from several auto manufacturers who have already invested heavily in electric vehicles (EVs). They argue that this delay will slow down the greener car manufacturing process and disrupt the supply chain.
The prime minister justified the extension by stating that it would help lighten the financial burden on households that are already struggling. However, this announcement has led to confusion and mixed reactions among industry leaders and environmentalists.
Auto manufacturers have called for more certainty and less confusion in the policy. Kia, a leading car manufacturer, expressed dissatisfaction with the delay as it was planning to launch nine new EVs in the country, and this setback would impact its future plans. Other companies, such as Volkswagen UK, urged the government to provide a clear and reliable regulatory framework that creates market certainty and consumer confidence.
The UK’s 2030 target was introduced as part of the country’s ‘green revolution’ by former Prime Minister Boris Johnson in November 2020. This target was accompanied by the zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) mandate, which requires manufacturers to increase the proportion of electric vehicles they sell in the UK. The current proposal states that each manufacturer should have 22% of their current car sales as EVs by 2024, gradually increasing each year until reaching 100% by 2035.
Despite the delay, it is important to note that from 2035 onwards, every car sold in the UK should fall under the zero-emission target. European car makers have argued that the government should focus more on boosting EV production to meet future requirements rather than implementing stricter emission limits.
While some have criticized this decision, others have appreciated it. Toyota, for example, believes that it will help the industry and consumers adapt and adjust to a pragmatic vehicle transition. The company recognizes that all low emission and affordable technologies can play a role in achieving a greener transportation system.
It is clear that the UK government’s decision to extend the net zero target and delay the ban on petrol and diesel cars has sparked controversy and divided opinions. Industry leaders, environmentalists, and political parties will continue to debate the implications of this policy change as they strive towards a sustainable and carbon-neutral future.