The Somerset Guardian, 17th November 2021

This week, the Government confirmed that all new heavy goods vehicles in the United Kingdom (UK) will be zero-emission by 2040. This, combined with the UK’s 2030 phase out for petrol and diesel cars and vans, represents a world-leading pledge to end the sale of all polluting road vehicles within the next two decades.

The UK will become the first country in the world to commit to phasing out new, non-zero emission heavy goods vehicles weighing twenty-six tonnes and under by 2035, with all new HGVs sold in the UK to be zero emission by 2040.

This comes as new research commissioned by the UK COP Presidency shows the progress made in the passenger vehicle market:

  • 31% of the global passenger vehicle market is now covered by vehicle manufacturer commitments to end sales of fossil-fuel-powered vehicles. This is up from a near-zero share of the market at the start of 2021. Global sales of zero emission vehicles (ZEVs) have grown dramatically since 2019 from 2.1 million to 5.3 million;

  • ZEVs are forecast to be 70% of all new car sales in 2040 with this projection having doubled in the last five years;

  • 19% of 2020 passenger vehicles sales were in countries that now have an internal combustion engine (ICE) phase-out date, up from 5% in 2019.

In addition to these pioneering moves, the Government will also be unveiling a new design for electric vehicle chargepoints (pictured). Showcased in the UK Pavilion at COP26 and designed together with the Royal College of Art and PA Consulting, I am delighted that the concept prioritises inclusivity and ease of use.

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