On the occasion of Transport Day (November 10) at COP26, 32 countries and hundreds of cities, regions and companies have signed a new pledge to end sales of petrol and diesel vehicles by 2040 – but there have been several notable absences.
The UK government had stated before COP26 started in Glasgow that it intended to gain global momentum around its own commitments to increase sales of new petrol and diesel cars by 2030 and sales of new heavy duty petrol and diesel trucks by 2040. to end.
As expected, this commitment took shape on Transport Day at the Scottish Events Campus in Glasgow, with a new international statement for nations and non-state actors. The statement states that, consistent with a zero-zero world by 2050, all new vehicle sales should be zero-emissions in leading markets by 2035. A deadline of 2040 applies to all other markets.
Developed countries have pledged to announce a ban as soon as possible, while emerging and developing markets say they will “work intensively to accelerate the diffusion and adoption of zero-emission vehicles” and work with other countries to ensure a just transition.
The three largest car markets in the world, the US, Germany and China, have not yet signed the declaration at this stage.
The promise to cities, states and regions, meanwhile, includes converting owned or leased fleets to zero-emission vehicles by 2035 or earlier, and “entering policies that will enable, accelerate, or otherwise encourage the transition to zero-emission vehicles as soon as possible, to the extent possible under our jurisdiction”.
Notably, the US states of California, New York and Washington supported the deal, as did cities such as Dallas, Charleston, Atlanta and Seattle.
The commitment for automakers is to develop a business strategy to move to a 100% zero-emission vehicle portfolio by 2035. Despite months of pressure from the UK, four of the world’s five largest automakers – Volkswagen, Toyota, the Renault-Nissan alliance, and Hyundai-Kia – have not signed up at this stage. BMW is also noticeably absent.
The companies that have applied are Avera EVs, BYD Auto, Etrio, Ford, Gayam Motor Works, General Motors, Jaguar Land Rover, Mercedes-Benz, MOBI, Quantum Motors and Volvo Cars.
Despite the absences, the UK government predicts that zero-emission vehicles will account for 40% of all new car sales by 2040. Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said zero-emissions transportation has now “reached a tipping point”.
Next steps for the UK
Following on from its own zero-emission vehicle commitments, the UK government is under constant pressure to ensure adequate infrastructure and skills plans are in place to make the transition. The Green Finance Institute today released a new set of policy recommendations, including increased EV borrowing capacity to boost short-term sales, coupled with vehicle, energy and charging infrastructure financing bundles through monthly payments.
Other entities that have made policy recommendations in this area include the Transport Select Committee and the Science and Technology Select Committee of the House of Lords.
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