Half of new cars sold in the UK to be ultra-low emission by 2030

Alexandra Rogers
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Petrol and Diesel-fuelled vehicles face a ban in 2040 (Source: Getty)

At least half of all new car sales are to be ultra-low emission by 2030 under a government pledge to reduce the UK's carbon footprint.

The new policy sets out how the UK aims to halt its sale of petrol and diesel vehicles while stopping short of a blanket ban.

At least half and as many as 70 per cent of new cars will be required to produce little carbon, meaning they will be electric or hybrid, as well as 40 per cent of new vans.

The proposals are outlined in the government's Road to Zero strategy, which also pledges to boost green infrastructure across the country and increase the number of zero-emissions vehicles on the roads.

It comes of the back of the government's plan to end the sale of new conventional petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2040, which was met with protests that it should be brought forward to 2030.

Read more: UK is leading the charge in vehicle-to-grid technology for electric cars

Chris Grayling, the transport secretary, said: “The Road to Zero strategy sets out a clear path for Britain to be a world leader in the zero emission revolution – ensuring that the UK has cleaner air, a better environment and a stronger economy.”

"The government‘s mission, as part of the modern industrial strategy, is to put the UK at the forefront of an industry that is estimated to be worth up to £7.6 trillion per year by 2050."

Labour's London Assembly spokesperson for the Environment, Leonie Cooper, said the strategy was "extremely disappointing" because hybrid vehicles remain on the roads.

"We urgently need the government to stop dragging their feet and put the measures in place to push through the wholesale transition to electric vehicles," Cooper said.

"With thousands of Londoners dying prematurely every year due to air pollution, we need much stronger assurances that the Government are serious about taking the most polluting vehicles off our roads.

"Sadiq Khan has led the way on tackling air pollution, implementing the T-Charge, and from 2019, the ultra-low emissions zone. It is high-time that the government followed his lead."

Read more: UK Government to ban the sale of all new petrol and diesel cars from 2040

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