RAC urges more EV support

RAC has asked for more government support to encourage drivers to switch to electric vehicles. Although there are long term plans in place, including the ban of new petrol and diesel motors by 2040, RAC feels more immediate, radical plans should be implemented.

Since last year, the sales of electric vehicles have deceased. RAC head of roads policy Nicholas Lyes stated, ‘With the latest figures showing a drop in the number of electric cars being sold in the UK at the start of this year compared to 2017, now is the time to ask whether incentives such as the plug-in grant scheme are doing enough to change drivers’ buying habits.’

By putting incentives in place, for example a VAT on sales of zero-emission vehicles, might encourage motorists towards switching to electric vehicles.

In addition to incentives, RAC said that by reassuring drivers over their major concerns of switching to electric (high up-front costs, access to charging points) can also be beneficial. Nicholas further endorsed this idea. He said, ‘A combination of competitive up-front vehicle costs and confidence in the charging infrastructure should provide the tipping point for a transition to zero-emission vehicles.’

A committee report written by MPs from Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Health and Environmental Audit and Transport Committees, reinforced RAC’s encouragement towards short-term goals to convince drivers towards the use of electric vehicles, and has gained the support of many environmental groups including Greenpeace and ClientEarth. Greenpeace clean air campaigner Rosie Rogers said, ‘The government must prioritise public health and bring forward its phase-out date by at least 10 years. Other countries have managed it, and people who live in the UK deserve clean air just as much.’