April 21, 2017
Diesel drivers could be paid up to £2,000 to scrap their vehicles 0
The new initiative is part of a new strategy aimed at tackling air quality levels after Europe said the UK’s measures towards the problem were not far-reaching enough.
Various newspapers are reporting that the government will adopt a scheme that involves drivers being given £2,000 to be put towards a new, cleaner car.
The plans are likely only to be aimed towards drivers living in badly affected parts of the UK – with regards to pollution levels. Others expected to benefit would be those on low incomes.
The new plans are expected to be made fully public in the next few days.
Diesel cars emit nitrogen oxide which exacerbates conditions such as asthma; older models are especially polluting.
In 2013, almost 12,000 deaths were linked to nitrogen dioxide in the UK – according to the European Environmental Agency – the second highest total in Europe after Italy.
There are currently around 11.2 million diesel vehicles on UK roads, 17% of these are over 12 years old and especially polluting.
Neil Parish, who chairs the Commons Environmental Committee, favours the scrappage initiative and will be raising it over the course of spring, at a Parliamentary debate.
He is expected to tell MPs that government funding of £500 million would remove almost 10% of the country most polluting vehicles from the roads.
Last year, the government was told to accelerate its plans to tackle pollution after a judicial review found its existing proposals to be “woefully inadequate”.
It is also said to be considering new taxes on dirty vehicles, although the Prime Minister, Theresa May, has said she did not want punish drivers who have been encouraged to buy diesel cars by previous governments.
Under the new scrappage plan, half of the reimbursements would come from the government with the surplus coming from car manufacturers.
An earlier scheme in 2009/10 offered drivers cash payments of £1,000 to trade in their aging cars.
This was topped up by matching payments from the car industry and took almost 400,000 of the most polluting vehicles off UK roads.
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