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COP 26 - Transport Day Review

COP26 Transport Day - Zero Emission HGVs

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November the 10th was officially dubbed ‘Transport Day’ at the COP 26 climate conference in Glasgow. The day was dedicated to discussing the decarbonisation of vehicles as well as other environmental considerations associated with transport.

One of the major takeaways announced during the day was that the UK is one of 15 countries to have signed a memorandum of understanding that new heavy goods vehicles sold from 2040 will need to have zero emissions. This coincides with the 2030/5 phase-out of petrol and diesel cars and vans, effectively ending the sales of all vehicles with tailpipe pollution in the next two decades.


In a statement to the press, the Government claimed that the UK is the first country in the world to commit to phasing out new, non-zero emission heavy goods vehicles weighing 26 tonnes and under by 2035, with all new HGVs sold in the UK to be zero emission by 2040.

Whilst this announcement didn’t come as a surprise to many, trepidation amongst transport industry leaders was clear about the impact on the industry alongside the need for additional support to ensure this ambitious target is met.

Michelle Gardner, head of policy at Logistics UK, said: “Our members need to see a nationwide network of recharging and refuelling infrastructure put in place, effective and affordable vehicles made readily available for all, and fairer charging arrangements for the necessary power upgrades to commercial premises.”

Echoing Michelle Gardner’s statements were The Road Haulage Association (RHA), who in an official statement said it was “concerned about timing of the phasing out of certain trucks from 2035 and firms needed proper phasing-in of new technology with realistic timescales.”

Stagecoach lays down gauntlet on COP26 transport day

According to a Route ONE Magazine article, Stagecoach has urged leaders at the COP26 transport day on 10 November to incentivise the use of public transport to help the UK to meet its net zero ambitions. You can read the full article HERE or by clicking the image.

Alongside the announcement of the decarbonisation of HGVs by 2040, the government also unveiled a new ‘iconic’ design for UK electric vehicle charge points. The new look charging points are part of a wider investment plan aimed at significantly upgrading the electric vehicle charging network across the UK, something that is deemed essential to ensuring that haulage and transport across the UK remains efficient and sustainable into the future. The government believe that the new design will “become as iconic as the Great British post box, London bus or black cab.”

In a statement about the UKs move to zero-carbon emissions and the need for additional infrastructure support, Grant Schapps, Transport Secretary, said “To support the transition to EVs, it’s integral that we have the infrastructure to support it. My vision is for the UK to have one of the best EV infrastructure networks in the world, with excellent British design at its heart.”


It wasn’t just HGVs that were the topic of conversation during COP26 transport day, shipping also came under scrutiny with plans for “green shipping corridors” unveiled targeting a shift towards zero-emissions vessels. A coalition of 19 countries including Britain have agreed to create zero emissions shipping trade routes between ports to speed up the decarbonisation of the global maritime industry. Shipping, which transports around 90% of world trade, accounts for almost 3% of the world’s CO2 emissions.


So, what does this mean for your business? In the short term these announcements may not cause any significant impact on the operations of your business. However, the long-term impacts of de-carbonisation will need to form part of your long-term business strategy as it becomes clear that the transport and haulage industry and on the precipice of a ‘green revolution’.


Phil Pittock, Parma Group Director, released this statement following the COP 26 Transport Day announcement -

“We welcome the move towards a ‘greener’ logistics industry as a positive step in ensuring the future of this great UK industry is sustainable and continues to be an integral part of the British economy for years to come. Parma Group has always believed in ‘going further’ to ensure that every road journey is safe and enjoyable, and we are committed to continuing to support customers with safety and styling products to ensure that this vital UK industry continues to thrive.”

To see how Parma Group can support your business with safety and styling products visit our new look website to browse our wide range of products or contact us on sales@parmagroup.co.uk to discuss your needs with one of our experts.