Economic instruments rejected by response on diesel pollution

Many of the recommendations for new controls on emissions from heavy diesel vehicles made by the Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution (RCEP) have been rejected by the Government.1 Its response takes a particularly dismissive line on the RCEP's proposals for grants and taxes to promote cleaner diesels - suggesting that its much-touted new preference for economic instruments in environment policy has yet to reach the Treasury.

The RCEP's report was published in September 1991 (ENDS Report 200, pp 9-10). It noted that buses and lorries account for a growing proportion of the UK's emissions of nitrogen oxides and smoke, and contribute significantly to urban air quality problems.

The report went on to recommend new controls in a number of areas, including the use of fiscal incentives and grants to promote the manufacture and uptake of cleaner engines ahead of EC l

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