On Tuesday, the European Parliament has approved a law to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles across European Union (EU) nations by 2035.
This is necessary as it claimed the aim is geared towards ramping up the production of electric cars and combating climate change.
Additionally, the passed law in Strasbourg aims to give European automakers a clear time frame to switch to production of electric vehicles and counter competition from China and the United States.
“Let me remind you that between last year and the end of this year, China will bring 80 models of electric cars to the international market,” EU vice president Frans Timmermans said.
Mr Timmermans added, “These are good cars. These are cars that will be more and more affordable, and we need to compete with them. We don’t want to give up this essential industry to outsiders.”
The new legislation demands that by 2035 automakers must achieve a 100 per cent cut in carbon dioxide emissions for each new car sold and a 55 per cent cut in carbon dioxide emissions for cars sold by 2030.
This means that by 2035, it would be impossible to sell a petrol or diesel car in the 27 countries of the European Union.
Jan Huitema, a member of the European Parliament, stated that these targets are crucial for Europe if it wants to achieve climate neutrality by 2050.
“These targets create clarity for the car industry and stimulate innovation and investments for car manufacturers,” Mr Huitema said.
“Purchasing and driving zero-emission cars will become cheaper for consumers, and a second-hand market will emerge more quickly. It makes sustainable driving accessible to everyone”
Karima Delli, chairman of the transport committee stressed that the law is a win for the planet and its people.
“Today’s vote is a historic vote for the ecological transition … it is a victory for our planet and our populations,” Ms Karima said.
Meanwhile, some automakers have already started preparing for the transition to electric vehicles.