Today [31 August], more than 30 industry leaders and environmental campaigners have urged ministers to cut duties on clean fuel replacements for diesel.
In a letter to Jesse Norman, transport minister, there is an emphasis on the “urgent imperative” to reduce harmful pollutants, with one in 20 deaths across the UK directly attributed to poor air quality.
Led by one of the UK’s largest sustainable fuels suppliers, Green Biofuels, the letter argues price reductions in renewable diesel fuel can be achieved at no cost to the taxpayer, with consumers encouraged to switch to sustainable alternatives by creating price parity with diesel.
Green Biofuels explained that “while some incentives do exist in the UK, these do not achieve price parity with diesel. As such, we believe your department, in collaboration with the Treasury, should look at reducing duties and creating tax incentives to catalyse the switch to renewable diesel”.
In 2022, the UK transport sector was responsible for 27% of all emissions, while reports suggest advanced biofuels can cut greenhouse gas emissions by up to 90%.
What’s more, despite an increased focus on the implementation of electric vehicles (EVs), recent reports have shown that fewer than five percent of the UK’s required EV charging capacity currently exists.
Industry leaders argue that the UK government needs to support cleaner fuels while EV infrastructure is developed.
Dominic Dyer, environmental campaigner, said: “Rather than rushing to yet more reliance on oil and gas, the government urgently needs to listen to industry figures who are helping to lead the UK’s transition to net-zero through sustainable fuels.
“This unified call for action clearly demonstrates the strong determination of both business leaders and everyday consumers who want to do the right thing for the environment. A duty cut for clean fuels, paid for by increased duty on dirty diesel, is essential if the UK is to cut greenhouse gases quickly.”
Signatories of support come from leading figures in firms such as infrastructure contractor Skanska and hauliers JW Suckling Transport Limited as well as from clean air campaigner and CEO of Enjoy the Air, Kate Barnard and environmental campaigner Dominic Dyer.