The Scottish government just unveiled plans to ban petrol and diesel cars from the nation’s city centers. With incentives planned to boost ownership of electric and hybrid vehicles the ruling Scottish National Party hopes that they can make clogged, congested and polluted urban hubs a thing of the past. But don’t expect the changes to happen soon; with the project facing much skepticism, the SNP has set a tentative deadline of 2050.
The notion is to reduce not just the number of polluting petrol and diesel cars sitting in dense, slow-moving traffic—and releasing a lot of unhealthy emissions—but also to reduce the number of incredibly short journeys that many take by car. Government statistics show that a third of all Scottish car journeys are less than two miles long, and a quarter are less than one mile long.
In addition to a straightforward ban on petrol and diesel cars from city centers, the government is continuing to encourage municipalities and individuals to adopt hybrid or electric technologies. A £14 million over the next two years will assist government agencies in making the switch from gasoline-powered cars, and individuals can continue to receive a £5,000 grant towards a greener car. The SNP also plans to improve the country’s EV charging infrastructure.
But the plan is facing many skeptics, including—perhaps counter-intuitively—the Scottish Green Party. According to MSN UK, the party has stated that “the money would be better spent improving the existing road infrastructure… [this] includes not just making the roads safer for cyclists and pedestrians, and improving public transport, but repairing pothole damage as well.”
Scotland’s transport minister Keith Brown, remains absolute: “transformation is absolutely vital to achieve our ambitious climate change targets.”
Via Electric Forum