UK: Dearman backs minister’s call on red diesel

London, UK: Dearman has backed Treasury minister Robert Jenrick, who called to “level the playing field” as he launches a consultation into red diesel use.

Ministers are keen to tackle Britain’s air pollution problem and a reviewing tax measures that undermine clean technologies.

Dearman has long argued that lower rates of duty on red diesel disincentivise the uptake of clean technologies. Dearman says there are 26,000 refrigerated trucks using red diesel to power the fridge. By encouraging these 26,000 trucks to adopt zero emission second engines instead, Britain could reduce its particulate matter emissions by the equivalent of 3.2 million diesel cars.

The red diesel call for evidence was announced in Chancellor Philip Hammond’s Spring Statement in March.  Launching it today, Treasury minister Robert Jenrick said: “Public health is at risk due to the use of red diesel in towns and cities. So we are looking at how we can level the playing field on red diesel and exploring how we can encourage users to ditch it.”

Commenting, Dearman’s director of special projects, David Rivington, said: “The minister is absolutely right to highlight the urban use of cheaper red diesel as a problem. Britain has an air pollution crisis, and although government has commendably invested in a number of affordable clean technologies, the business case for fleet operators ‘going green’ in cities is made less attractive by costly and unnecessary government subsidies. Launching this consultation is a first step to giving British-made clean technologies the level playing field they deserve.”