Thank you for contacting me about fuel prices and the future of petrol and diesel cars.
As you may be aware, a continuation of the freeze of fuel duty was promised during the election campaign. I welcome the fact that the decision to freeze fuel duty for ten consecutive years has saved the average driver over £1,000. I am confident that we can build on this legacy, so that ordinary hardworking people can keep more of their money.
As you may be aware, our Government plans to bring forward to 2035 the date at which sales of new petrol, diesel and hybrid cars and vans end, subject to consultation. I understand that the date could be earlier still if a faster transition proves feasible.
I fully support our Government’s legally binding target for the UK to reach net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. While it is important to encourage active travel and greater use of public transport to help drive down emissions and improve air quality, the reality is that for many commuters and businesses it is simply not possible to forgo using a vehicle in all situations. We have to recognise that the transition to electric and alternatively-fuelled vehicles will play a crucial role in helping us reach net zero carbon emissions, so it is important that our local, major and strategic roads are fit for purpose, both now and in the future.
The infrastructure is being put in place to facilitate the transition to EVs – including public charge points, residential on-street charge points as well as rapid and smart charge points. £2.5 billion in grants has been made available for plug-in passenger commercial vehicles and more than 18,000 publicly available charging devices, including 3,200 rapid devices. The UK now has one of the largest charge point networks in Europe, and there are now more EV charging locations than petrol stations. A consultation has also been held on all new-build homes in England being fitted with charge points.