“Look to natural gas to clean our air", former Minister urges Government following series of legal defeats.

21st February 2018
Having already been defeated in two court battles over air pollution, today the Government suffered a third defeat, with the judge not only ruling in ClientEarth’s favour, but declaring the government’s lack of action on the matter unlawful.

The Government’s record on air quality is characterised by inaction and uncertainty, yet there are a series of ‘quick wins’ they could make use of which would transform air quality in some of the 45 towns and cities outlined in the ClientEarth case.

The Natural Gas Vehicle Network (NGVN) urges the government to act immediately to tackle the dangerous air that so many in cities and towns are breathing. With around 40,000 UK deaths a year attributable to air pollution, and transport serving as the primary source of carbon emissions, it is vital that the issue of vehicular pollutants is tackled, urgently.

Mike Foster, Former Minister and CEO of the Natural Gas Vehicles Network, said:

“Given that HGVs emit 21% of total transport derived nitrous oxide, whilst making up just 2% of vehicles on the road, they should be a point of focus if the government is to meet its air quality targets, yet are often forgotten.”

He added:

“Today’s ruling highlights that it is time for the UK to switch from dirty diesel HGVs to natural gas. If vehicles were to use natural gas, NOx emissions could be reduced by 74%, Particulate Matter by 96%, and if they use Biomethane, carbon emissions would also be reduced by over 80%. By committing to a long term duty differential between gas and diesel, the Treasury would strongly signal the Government’s intent.”