Being as ambitious as possible with the transition to electric vehicles (EVs) promises to deliver the biggest benefits across the economy, according to research.
On 9 November, Greenpeace UK published analysis which explored the impacts of banning sales of new petrol, diesel and hybrid cars and vans by 2030 in comparison to 2035 – the current date government is committed to. It found that an earlier phase out could lead to 32,000 new jobs, both due to a rapid EV transition and increased economic activity, and £4.2bn for the economy, handing the government a £1.9bn net increase in revenue.
Increased economic activity would arise from the lower overall costs of owning and running an EV, lower demand for imported oil and its replacement by UK-generated electricity. This would ensure consumers have increased disposable income and lead to a reallocation of spending, frequently towards those industries currently struggling with Covid restrictions.
The report further highlighted how a 2030 phase out could see the UK able to capture a larger share of both the domestic and European markets for electric cars and vans. Should UK manufacturers increase their share of the UK market from 34% to 42% over the next 20 years, it would lead to a further 0.4% growth in GDP in 2030 – worth £10.3bn – along with another 31,000 jobs across society. Proactive government policies would be needed for this to happen, however.
In terms of Europe, increasing the UK’s share of the market from 3% to 4% over the next 20 years would lead to another 0.2% boost to GDP in 2030 – equivalent to £6.5bn – and a further 22,000 new jobs.