Yesterday (25 June 2020), the Committee on Climate Change published their 2020 Progress Report. One of the key recommendations is to bring forward the ban on petrol and diesel vehicles to 2032.
Alfonso Martinez, managing director of LeasePlan UK, said: “We support the call for a more ambitious approach from the UK Government to the EV transition. The industry has made terrific progress over the past three to four years, not just in the range of models but in the improvement of technology and decrease in price. Therefore, a 2032 deadline should be entirely achievable target if we continue to progress with urgency and an emboldened attitude.
“That said, there are still a number of challenges that the Government needs to address to support the widespread adoption of EVs in a fair and sustainable way. Firstly, we need to ensure that the UK is at the forefront of manufacturers’ thinking when it comes to supply, not just now but post Brexit. The introduction of Clean Air Zones across the country and Government initiatives incentivising EV uptake only make sense if we have assurance that we’ll have access to lowest emitting vehicles going forward.
“Secondly, there must be an infrastructure upgrade of network operations, as we need to be sure that the grid is ready for a huge influx of charging points. At the same time, we need to see a targeted installation of charging points in locations where they are needed the most, not just along the busiest motorways. This should include supporting workplaces to meet growing demand, as well as upgrading our existing home power supply structures to allow for the most powerful and modern home chargers to be installed in every single home. Ideally, all new build homes should be constructed with charge points and solar panels as standard. This would help to meet the demand that will undoubtedly arise when the sale of ICE and hybrid vehicles becomes unlawful.”
Toby Poston, BVRLA Director of Corporate Affairs said: “It is too early to say whether 2032 is a realistic target date for the entire new car and van market to go zero-emission. In the fleet sector, the zero emission vehicle outlook varies considerably depending on what type of vehicle you are using and what your operating model is.
“There needs to be a more segmented approach that considers what is realistic for all vehicle types. Suitable vehicle supply, infrastructure, range and cost of ownership is not there yet for all fleet users. The challenges faced by LCV and HGV operators is very different to those faced by car fleet operators, who are further along on the road to zero.
“While we welcome measures that help ensure an adequate supply of new electric vehicles into the UK, we would not support a zero emission vehicle mandate, particularly if it also led to any kind of Fleet EV Mandate requiring companies to make a certain portion of their fleet zero-emission. With vehicle availability, affordability and infrastructure not being where it needs to be, the market is just not ready for this kind of operating constraints at a time.
“These issues are fundamental to driving an uptake in zero emission vehicles and the BVRLA will continue to make recommendations to Government as to what support is needed.”