RAC, the British automotive services company, is urging the government to encourage more drivers to switch to electric vehicles. Although long term plans are in place, such as the ban of new petrol and diesel motors by 2040, RAC thinks there should be some immediate measures taken.
With the latest figures showing a drop in the number of electric cars being sold in the UK at the start of this year compared to 2017, now is the time to ask whether incentives such as the plug-in grant scheme are doing enough to change driversâ buying habits, said Nicholas Lyes, RAC head of roads policy.
As a solution, RAC suggested that the government should put incentives in place, such as a VAT on sales of zero-emission vehicles, as they might encourage motorists to switch to electric vehicles. Drivers should also be reassured over their major concerns of taking this step. A combination of competitive up-front vehicle costs and confidence in the charging infrastructure should provide the tipping point for a transition to zero-emission vehicles, explained Nicholas.
RACâs idea was further reinforced by a committee report written by MPs from Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Health and Environmental Audit and Transport Committees, which also encourages short-term goals to convince drivers towards the use of electric vehicles. The report has gained support from many environmental groups such as Greenpeace and ClientEarth.
The government must prioritise public health and bring forward its phase-out date by at least 10 years. Other countries have managed it, and people who live in the UK deserve clean air just as much, said Rosie Rogers, Greenpeace clean air campaigner.