The French government made a vow in 2017 to end sales of cars that use gasoline or diesel, including hybrids, by the year 2040, as part of the country’s efforts toward meeting the emission reduction aims of the Paris climate accord.
France’s transport minister, Elizabeth Borne, reiterated the stance on Tuesday when she said government planned to uphold the ban, according to a Reuters report.
“We have target for carbon neutrality by 2050 and we need a credible trajectory toward that, which includes a ban on the sale of vehicles that consume fossil fuels by 2040,” she said. “We will now inscribe this target into law.”
The target was originally announced by France’s former environment minister, Nicolas Hulot, who resigned last year due to the lack of progress toward achieving the target. Based on Borne’s comments, it appears the French government is no longer dragging its feet.
Borne also said the government would help its automakers, namely Renault and PSA Group, help make the switch to cars running on electricity, hydrogen and possibly biogas. This could include laws that help facilitate the installation of charging points, an example of which could be making it easier to add charge points to parking bays of apartment buildings.
The stance is not unique to France, though the country is more progressive compared to most others. Fellow European countries such as Norway, the Netherlands and even Germany are considering similar bans on gasoline and diesel cars. While in China, the government is offering extensive financial support for the sale and production of electric cars in an effort to curb air pollution in major cities and reduce the dependence on oil imports.