UK fuel duty remains frozen for the seventh year running; £690m allocated to tackle congestion

Fuel duty in Britain remains frozen at 57.95p per litre for the seventh year running, chancellor Philip Hammond has confirmed during his budget speech to the House of Commons.

Hammond also announced further plans to reduce congestion in urban areas, with £690 million allocated to tackle local traffic "to get transport networks moving again".

He also said money would be allocated to programmes supporting the development of driverless vehicles.

Hammond was expected to launch the UK government's planned diesel scrappage scheme, but it was not mentioned in the budget. The Department for Transport and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs was considering offering a cashback payment or money off low-emission vehicles in exchange for buyers’ older, high-polluting diesel vehicles, in a bid to reduce transport pollution.

UK government under scrutiny over diesel NO2 emissions

Instead, Hammond said the government would continue to work at addressing the UK's air quality problem and consider new "tax treatment for diesel vehicles" that may be announced in the Autumn budget.

Mike Hawes, the cheif executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, has been vocal on the subject. He said “The automotive industry is investing significantly in new technology to address the issue of air quality, so we look forward to working with government to encourage the uptake of the latest, low emission vehicles, regardless of fuel type. Nearly one in two new car buyers chose a diesel last year and getting more Euro 6 diesels on the road will be part of the solution as we also strive to meet our climate change targets."

Hawes was in support of the government's funding for sustainable vehicles, but emphasised that investment would need to continue into the future to maintain the UK's position as Europe's biggest buying of electric cars.

"UK Automotive plays a critical role in the country’s economy but future success will depend upon maintaining competitiveness. It's disappointing, therefore, that the Chancellor hasn't prioritised additional funding for supply chain development, nor addressed the flaw in business rates that disincentivises investment in plants and machinery."

The matter of sustainable transport has been a core subject of discussion for some time, with transport secretary Chris Grayling saying in the House of Commons last month that the UK’s pollution problem needed to be addressed urgently. He said: "We have to find the right way to migrate the nature of the cars on our roads to a point where they cause much less of a pollution problem than they do at the moment."

Diesel vehicles should be made cleaner, not scrapped

Several local government organisations have already begun to try to discourage people from driving diesel cars, with Westminster City Council announcing an increase in parking charges for diesel vehicles in a bid to cut nitrogen dioxide (NO2) emissions in the Greater London borough. High levels of NO2 increase the risk of respiratory problems in humans and are said to increase the risk of cancer.

London is among the UK’s most polluted cities, with Brixton Road in the capital’s south breaching its annual limit for NO2 just five days into 2017.

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Comments
29

3 February 2017
This is about stimulating the economy not cleaning up the air - that could be done in a much more environmentally friendly way by retro fitting emissions equipment. Theres nothing "green" about scrapping perfectly good cars. No mention of the cancer causing benzine that petrol cars emit and that you breathe in every time you smell petrol ? Strange that.

3 February 2017
typos1 wrote:

This is about stimulating the economy not cleaning up the air - that could be done in a much more environmentally friendly way by retro fitting emissions equipment. ....

What could you do to a 10 year old Fiesta puffing out soot. Even if possible there wouldn't be enough garages in the UK to fix all the ropey diesels out there.

RIP Diesel (That's rattle in Peace)

 

Hydrogen cars just went POP

9 March 2017
DEFRA roadside tests (2014) included number-plate recognition and found it was post 2005 diesels and older Petrol cars that produced the most urban NOx (50% of all UK urban NOx is from euro 1-3 petrol engines). As petrol engines wear (and they do so around twice the rate of diesels) they produce mroe NOx. The vexing question was why were older (pre 2005) diesels cleaner? The main reason was #vehicleobesity Where the old Fiesta was barely 1 tonne, today's supersizeme SUV culture (imported from the USA) means even a MINI Countryman is over 1.5 tonnes with a drag inducing CdA adding to energy requirements. The recent Hatfield A1M tunnel tests by University of Herts revealed 2/3rds of roadside pollution is from road contact. The heavier the car the more the tyre wear, brake dust, road surface degradation and of course the more energy consumed. More energy more fuel, more emissions from exhaust as well. Whilst EVs don't use the brakes much with regen (unless fully charged), the extra girth does affect road contact pollution levels.

10 March 2017
[quote=xxxx][quote=typos1]This is about stimulating the economy not cleaning up the air - that could be done in a much more environmentally friendly way by retro fitting emissions equipment. ....[/quote] What could you do to a 10 year old Fiesta puffing out soot. Even if possible there wouldn't be enough garages in the UK to fix all the ropey diesels out there. RIP Diesel (That's rattle in Peace)[/quote]No surprise to see four x miss the point. Typos1 is entirely correct that scrapping cars with useful life remaining is stupid and in motoring terms is the greatest sin against the environment. No car has ever been made, and none ever will be, which would justify scrapping a usable existing car to make way for it. The only truly environmentally sensible policy is to keep every existing car running for the longest possible time. Longevity is everything.

I don't need to put my name here, it's on the left

 

10 March 2017
[quote=xxxx][quote=typos1]This is about stimulating the economy not cleaning up the air - that could be done in a much more environmentally friendly way by retro fitting emissions equipment. ....[/quote] What could you do to a 10 year old Fiesta puffing out soot. Even if possible there wouldn't be enough garages in the UK to fix all the ropey diesels out there. RIP Diesel (That's rattle in Peace)[/quote]No surprise to see four x miss the point. Typos1 is entirely correct that scrapping cars with useful life remaining is stupid and in motoring terms is the greatest sin against the environment. No car has ever been made, and none ever will be, which would justify scrapping a usable existing car to make way for it. The only truly environmentally sensible policy is to keep every existing car running for the longest possible time. Longevity is everything.

I don't need to put my name here, it's on the left

 

3 February 2017
So buyers have been rewarded through lower taxation for buying diesel cars, which turned out to be a mistake, and are now being rewarded for getting rid of them. How about a tax break on petrol instead?

3 February 2017
Will86 wrote:

So buyers have been rewarded through lower taxation for buying diesel cars, which turned out to be a mistake, and are now being rewarded for getting rid of them. How about a tax break on petrol instead?

Couldn't agree more. Why should I as a tax payer help towards those wanting to update their diesel vehicles. For years I've subsidised diesel car drivers through the governments misguided tax regime, whilst I have paid higher rates for my petrol vehicle. Increased taxes for diesels and reduced ones for petrol should be on the agenda not some silly scrappage scheme.

8 March 2017
[quote=catnip][quote=Will86]So buyers have been rewarded through lower taxation for buying diesel cars, which turned out to be a mistake, and are now being rewarded for getting rid of them. How about a tax break on petrol instead?[/quote] Couldn't agree more. Why should I as a tax payer help towards those wanting to update their diesel vehicles. For years I've subsidised diesel car drivers through the governments misguided tax regime, whilst I have paid higher rates for my petrol vehicle. Increased taxes for diesels and reduced ones for petrol should be on the agenda not some silly scrappage scheme.[/quote] Why should diesel drivers be hit in the pocket for following a Labour Governments, the media, and the automotive industries advice and switching to diesel, surely those giving the advice should be made to cover the cost. Remember some manufacturers dont even offer petrol versions of certain vehicles.

8 March 2017
[quote=Citytiger][quote=catnip][quote=Will86]So buyers have been rewarded through lower taxation for buying diesel cars, which turned out to be a mistake, and are now being rewarded for getting rid of them. How about a tax break on petrol instead?[/quote] Couldn't agree more. Why should I as a tax payer help towards those wanting to update their diesel vehicles. For years I've subsidised diesel car drivers through the governments misguided tax regime, whilst I have paid higher rates for my petrol vehicle. Increased taxes for diesels and reduced ones for petrol should be on the agenda not some silly scrappage scheme.[/quote] Why should diesel drivers be hit in the pocket for following a Labour Governments, the media, and the automotive industries advice and switching to diesel, surely those giving the advice should be made to cover the cost. Remember some manufacturers dont even offer petrol versions of certain vehicles.[/quote] But diesel drivers have benefitted financially for years from all that advice and encouragement. Those of us not driving diesel have had none of these advantages, and to add to this, would now have to contribute to a scrappage scheme.

9 March 2017
Petrol still worse overall! 50% of ALL UK urban NOx from euro 1-3 petrols and Euro 5s tested last year showing similar wear and tear. More refining energy costs, more ethanol content, less energy density, far less thermodynamic efficiency (30% vrs 50%), more acrid NH3, More CO, more CO2, and after 50,000 miles more NOx from faster wear rate and burning oil. Petrol is a cutting fluid. Power is a twice the revs. More Particulate matter (10 x more from euro 6 petrol than diesels due lack of PM trap).... Love old petrol cars but they ain't greener than demonised diesel!

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