France‘s new president Emmanuel Macron wants to make his country carbon neutral by 2050. To work towards that goal, environment minister Nicolas Hulot just unveiled plans to ban the sale of new vehicles that run on diesel and petrol by the year 2040.
Diesel and petrol vehicles could exit French roads in around 23 years. Hulot said the country will ban the polluting vehicles then, but does have a few plans to make the transition a little easier. He said the goal would put a burden on car manufacturers in France but the government has a few projects which “can fulfill that promise.” Households in France with lower incomes will be given a premium so they’ll be able to bid adieu to vehicles running on fossil fuels for cleaner options.
That’s not the only goal Hulot unveiled. He also said France would stop burning coal for power in around five years, in 2022. As much as four billion Euros, around $4.5 billion, could be invested in energy efficiency. These targets are part of a five-year plan to boost clean energy and meet France’s goals under the Paris Agreement.
France will also cease importing products like palm oil and soya that are largely produced unsustainably and are contributing to deforestation. Hulot said it would be schizophrenic to work towards reducing carbon dioxide emissions while also accepting deforestation since trees can act as carbon sinks and absorb carbon dioxide if they’re not chopped down.
These goals are part of France’s efforts to help lead the battle against climate change, according to Hulot. He said, “We want to demonstrate that fighting against climate change can lead to an improvement of French people’s daily lives.”
Via The Independent