Lowering car pollution a major part of Paris Climate Agreement

Posted on 18 November 2016 by CarTakeBack

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The UK government has signed the world's first comprehensive agreement on tackling climate change. There were no objections raised in the House of Commons or Lords to the Paris deal.

More than 100 countries have signed the agreement, which commits them to try to stabilise emissions at a level which would see a temperature rise of no more than 1.5C. There will be many different ways to reach this goal, though in recent years the vehicles on our roads have accounted for a quarter of the UK's greenhouse gas emissions, so will no doubt be a big focus to contribute to reducing emissions.

Markus Hagemann of NewClimate Institute said:

“Emissions standards only get the transport fleet to a certain point – it is clear that in order to get to the Paris Agreement’s lower temperature goal of 1.5C, the world needs to make a paradigm shift to zero emissions vehicles.”

Current government policies in the EU, China and the US will see just 5% of all cars on the roads being zero emissions vehicles by 2030. Some countries are taking the lead and moving quicker to make the change to electric vehicles, in the Netherlands a parliamentary committee is investigating a ban on new petrol cars by 2025. In Norway last year 23% of new vehicle registrations were electric vehicles.

Both India and China have demanded that people only use their cars on alternate days to reduce pollution, which is causing serious health issues for the populations.

Jenny Bates, campaigner from Friends of the Earth, said:

“Road traffic [is] the biggest problem, and diesel the worst of all. [The government] must create a plan for phasing out diesel use on Britain’s roads, along with cutting traffic levels and preventing road-building adding to the problem. We know it can be done: the Netherlands and Norway are planning a ban on new diesel and petrol cars from 2025, which large parts of Copenhagen are traffic free.”

To meet these climate targets over the coming years, we could see many old polluting cars coming off our roads and being recycled to make room for zero emissions electric vehicles.

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