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2020 / 2021 Edition

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MPA sets conditions for zero-emission HGVs

DAF Trucks

Mineral Products Association supports the shift but says two key criteria need to be met

THE Mineral Products Association (MPA) has set out its support for shifting road haulage to zero-emission heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) alongside the key criteria that need to be met.

Responding to a consultation from the Department for Transport (DfT), the MPA supports phase-out dates for selling non-zero emission diesel HGVs, but only if suitable vehicles are available and the necessary infrastructure is in place in good time.

HGVs account for 16% of UK transport emissions despite accounting for only 1% of road vehicles. In the mineral products sector, most of these vehicles are currently diesel powered.

That said, MPA members are committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and have a strong track record of meeting emissions requirements for their fleets – such as the Ultra Low Emission Zone in London.

The MPA has set out two key tests to enable the switch away from diesel entirely: first, suitable vehicles must be available that can affordably fulfil the operational needs of MPA members and their customers; and secondly, the infrastructure for charging or refuelling must be deployed widely to allow businesses to operate efficiently.

Robert McIlveen, public affairs director at the MPA, said: ‘Our members are committed to the UK’s net-zero goal and will switch away from diesel once they can buy or lease affordable vehicles they can run and refuel with confidence.

‘2040 is a fair way off for the heaviest vehicles and the manufacturers are already bringing forward early models, so our main concern is the infrastructure.

‘There’s no point having a hydrogen truck if you can’t refuel it easily. Electric charging is a worry with the cost of upgrading the grid on top of the UK already having the highest industrial electricity prices in Europe.

‘Tackling these challenges is an urgent and essential job for government.’

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