UKPIA Response to the Plug-In Car Grant reforms

UKPIA calls for technology neutral approach in lowering carbon emissions from transport

UKPIA calls for technology neutral approach in lowering carbon emissions from transport

Today, the UK Government has announced reforms to the Plug-In Car Grant (PICG). Today there are 37.5 million vehicles licensed for use on roads in Great Britain of which 160,000 have benefitted from the previous Grant structure. Petrol and diesel-powered vehicles still account for around 99% of the UK’s passenger car fleet.

Stephen Marcos-Jones, UKPIA’s Director-General said “Today’s announcement will change the amount of subsidy available to plug-in car buyers but we should remember that this is only part of the picture in reducing transport emissions and that there is no silver bullet.

The downstream oil industry is making efforts to reduce carbon emissions from transport through the production of increasingly low carbon fuels and working with car manufacturers to improve efficiency. Under the Fuel Quality Directive suppliers are required to reduce the carbon intensity of transport fuels by 6% by 2020 against a 2010 baseline. Today’s announcement focusses on tailpipe emissions - an important factor when lowering Green House Gas emissions - but it is vital that government focusses on life-cycle emissions when reducing the whole economy’s emissions.

Recent work by Fuels Europe focussing on light-duty transport shows that life-cycle emissions could potentially be reduced to 13% of their 2015 values by 2050 using a combination of low carbon fuels including hydrogen, synthetic fuels and biofuels and some electric. 

We believe that a technology neutral approach is the best way to reduce carbon emissions and should not underestimate the importance of low carbon liquid fuels to reduce emissions in transport alongside electrification and other technologies.”


Enquiries to: UKPIA Press Office, Tel. 020 7269 7605

  1. UKPIA represents eight oil refining and marketing companies that operate the six major oil refineries in the UK and source over 85% of the transport fuels used. UKPIA members also own around 1,250 of the UK's 8,476 filling stations in the UK.
  2. UKPIA members supply over 33% of the UK’s primary energy needs and support the employment of 88,100 people across the UK.
  3. Fuels Europe Vision 2050 can be found here.
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