A report about the project was published on March 26, 2020. When it comes to carbon neutrality, transport has a significant impact factor. Nevertheless, the report clarifies that all the economic sectors will need to make substantial changes in order to tackle the climate change issue and mitigate their environmental footprint. The Government's plan is to reach net-zero carbon dioxide emissions in the transportation industry within the next 20 years.
"The Transport Decarbonization Plan (TDP) will set out in detail what government, business and society will need to do to deliver the significant emissions reduction needed across all modes of transport, putting us on a pathway to achieving carbon budgets and net zero emissions across every single mode of transport by 2050," the reports mentions.
During the past years, UK focused on introducing electric vehicle technology to replace fossil fuels in transport. Incorporating more and more electric vehicles to achieve carbon neutrality is a matter of high importance. In February 2020, the government announced that diesel and petrol cars will be banned by 2035.
It is certain that this transition will result in an increased need for electric power, but officials ensure that there are plans to tackle the demand. Infrastructure associated with electric vehicles (e.g. charging stations) will also be developed. There are currently 21,000 public chargers in the UK, however, estimations predict that 10 times more chargers will need to be installed in the cities and 3,500 rapid charging stations in highways.
Regarding railways, the report indicates that trains have already reduced their environmental footprint while new technology is constantly evolving. Nevertheless, the Government requested the rail industry to introduce a plan in order to remove all the diesel-powered trains by 2040. The report suggests that electrifying the railway network is crucial to achieve carbon neutrality. "We have delivered over 1,000 single track miles of electrification since 2010. Most passenger journeys are made on electric trains. We continue to expand the electrified rail network...".
Officials stated that during this unfortunate period triggered by the coronavirus outburst, transportations have been significantly mitigated. Therefore, the carbon emissions have been temporarily reduced and people have the opportunity to witness a future decarbonized environment.