Sunday 17 December 2017

Let's not forget how important diesel is for many in rural areas

SIMI Director General Alan Nolan
SIMI Director General Alan Nolan
Eddie Cunningham

Eddie Cunningham

IT is being widely anticipated that there will be changes to the taxation system for motoring over the coming years - if not sooner.

Pressure for action on diesel, in particular, is growing.

But as SIMI director general Alan Nolan pointed out recently, we don't want a sudden swerve in legislation - like what happened in 2008 when we jolted from taxation being based on engine size to being calculated on emissions.

That would allowing for no planning and cause chaos - it certainly did back then.

While diesel is getting a bad press in several quarters at the moment, there is no doubt it is often the only realistic choice for thousands of families living in rural Ireland.

They benefit from lower taxation and fuel frugality as they need cars to cover substantial mileage.

Mr Nolan made a good point: "It is dangerous to 'blanket blame' diesel. What's fine for Dalkey may not be for Belmullet."

We need to be careful we don't overreact.

What measures are in line is not yet clear but, to repeat, we don't need another lurch.

An example of the sort of thinking within some governments lies with our British counterparts.

It has been reported that they are considering a diesel 'scrappage scheme' later this year aimed at reducing the number of so-called 'high-polluting' vehicles on their roads.

Reports in the British press suggest they are looking at offering a cash-back payment or money off low-emission vehicles in exchange for older diesels.

Indo Motoring

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