Sorry Mr Fat Controller, I just don’t get it. The Chancellor has made some budget changes allegedly aimed at dropping carbon emissions from cars, not at raising money for the Government, oh no. Yet in my circumstance I’m going to be penalised for keeping my car in the garage, running it under three thousand miles a year and cycling to work.
I’m actually better buying an old emission heavy car and selling my current car. I would be better off buying a pre 2001 four or five litre American muscle car that churns out emissions. I would even be better off buying a small engined 4×4 or People Carrier and using that on the roads!
Why am I being penalised for keeping a car in my garage with the engine off?
I’ve had my car for over three years now, and it’s done a tiny eight thousand miles, just over two of those in the last year. My Vehicle Excise Duty is already £195 a year, and now that is set to double in the next two years.
How exactly is that helping to fight emissions? Well, quite frankly it’s not. Like the TV license it’s hitting people for owning something, not against those who actually use it.
It makes much more sense in raising the costs of fuel. The gas guzzlers will drink more fuel and so the owners will pay more to drive them and earn the Government more revenue directly from those cars. The people who drive more economical cars or drive them less will use less fuel and therefore pay less. Isn’t that the actual model we’re looking for?
That way I would pay less for having my car sitting in the garage with the engine off, which is far better than a low emissions car driving around the streets, or an electric car charging from the house mains and pulling power from the power station which is outputting emissions by the truck load.
I pay over six hundred pounds a year on my car on insurance, yearly service and MOT is between two and three hundred pounds, and currently just shy of two hundred pounds for the VED. That’s before any mileage. Aren’t I penalised enough? My sub three thousand miles a year are not a major contributor to the environmental pollution.
I already have environmentally friendly lightbulbs around the house, I recycle, I don’t take bags from supermarket shopping, buy my house energy from a green power company, now I’m being charged for not emitting gases?!
It’s another example of poorly thought through policies. Just look at the costs for my trip to London the other week. Six times cheaper to travel by incredibly pollutive planes rather than trains. Six times! Why doesn’t the Government push the prices of train travel down and encourage more people to travel that way rather than by air? That’ll help reduce emissions. Or maybe just stop their own employees from travelling ridiculous amounts each week.
This has nothing to do with the environment, and all to do with Government pockets and tactical budgets for the coming elections and poorly managed Government funds.