Sales of new diesel HGVs should be halted by 2040


‘Environment’ is certainly becoming the watch word for our society today. Many more people and industries are taking note of the effects that ours daily lives are having on the environment in terms of pollution and climate change. Now the government is stepping up to update emissions regulations and guidelines in the transport sector.

The National Infrastructure Commission is calling on the government to implement its plans to remove all new petrol and diesel vehicles from the market by the year 2040. Full plans are still yet to be unveiled but the NIC is hopeful that all the finer details will be released within the next two years to give manufacturers and hauliers time to prepare for a future without fossil fuels.

The future of commercial transport

It’s expected that the UK government will aim to make the road and rail freight industry completely carbon free by the year 2050. But in order to reach that target, significant changes need to be implemented over the next couple of decades and time is running out for the industry to get a move on.

A report published by the NIC – titled “Better Delivery: The challenge for freight” – presents its own estimates for how commercial transport may operate in the next 30 years. The NIC expects that the number of heavy goods vehicles on the road to increase by between 30-45%, while the total mileage they cover could almost double by 2050.

What’s needed from the government?

The report warns that if action isn’t taken soon, the issue of curbing emissions could get worse and become more difficult to recover from in the future if we want to reach a carbon-free 2050 target. It’s hoped that the government will unveil an in-depth plan of how to approach a complete ban on new petrol and diesel sales by 2040, as well as how our transport infrastructure will serve alternatives in the near future.

With only 20 years to go until that target date, transitioning to electric or alternative fuels will need to take place relatively quickly. This has led to some hauliers and manufacturers have feeling frustrated over the uncertainties around what they need to do to plan ahead. The industry is keeping all eyes and ears open to any detailed news from the government in the coming months.

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