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Whilst we recognise that Government has to address the urgent issue of a clean air quality policy, we are concerned that the total focus may be heavily placed on the automotive industry. A ban on diesel and petrol vehicles is obviously of concern to the industry.
The ban is part of a Government plan to improve air quality. It includes £255 million to help local authorities to deal with toxic nitrogen dioxide (NO2) from diesel vehicles.
It is important that consumers who purchased cleaner Euro 6 diesel cars should not be penalised. In 2016, over half a million new diesel vehicles were sold.
The Government needs to ensure that the correct measures are in place in areas where pollution is at its highest and also ensure that these are not detrimental to the local economy.
It is also important that there is investment in electric vehicle infrastructure, particularly charging points. There is pressure from local authorities on private business to invest in the local grid infrastructure, to ensure that the UK electric provisions can cope with the increase in electricity used for charging these vehicles.
The Government has postponed a scrappage scheme for diesel cars, as it would be an expensive blunt instrument as any subsidy or scrappage allowance would need to be directed at the oldest cars which give off the most pollution.