Vehicle fuel taxes should rise to combat the air pollution crisis in the UK, with an extra charge on diesel, according to the conservative thinktank Bright Blue.
A report calls for VAT to be abolished on electric cars and for citizens to be able to report idling vehicles and receive a share of fines levied. It also proposes that the speed limit in all urban areas is cut from 30mph to 20mph and that local authorities should be able to profit from pollution charging schemes to fund clean-air projects.
Areas - UK - Register - Levels - Nitrogen
Most urban areas in the UK register illegal levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) pollution, which mainly comes from vehicles. But while Britain’s particulate levels are legal, they are above World Health Organization guidelines, which Bright Blue said should be the targets adopted by the UK. Polling for the thinktank showed 70% of people in the UK were concerned about the health impact of air pollution and wanted government action.
Dirty air causes 40,000 early deaths every year in the UK, and in 2016 a committee of MPs called the problem a “public health emergency”. The damage to lungs and hearts is well established but the latest research shows air pollution may be damaging every organ and virtually every cell in the body.
Government - NO2 - Pollution - Court - Occasions
Government plans to cut NO2 pollution have been declared illegally poor by the high court on three occasions and the former environment secretary Michael Gove recently said the UK had “failed to properly live up to our obligations to improve air quality”.
How green are electric cars?
Ryan - Shorthouse - Executive - Bright - Blue
Ryan Shorthouse, the chief executive of Bright Blue, said: “The evidence of the scale and impact of air pollution is growing and alarming. As the UK leaves the EU, there is a need and an opportunity to improve legislation, policies and accountability around air quality. Despite the rhetoric...
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