Drivers reject 2030 petrol and diesel car ban over fears anti-motorist plans would hammer working class

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A People Polling poll for GB News surveyed 1,948 people on September 18 before Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s speech yesterday in which he announced a move to postpone the ban for five years.

Asked for their views on plans to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel cars by 2030, almost one in three, or 32 per cent, said they “strongly opposed” the ban.

A further 18 per cent said they “tended to oppose it”, with a total of 50 per cent of drivers against the plans.

Only 15 per cent said they “strongly supported” the idea, with a further 19 per cent saying they “tended to support” the idea.

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Views on the issue also varied according to social class, with support growing to 44 per cent among middle class voters, while only 20 per cent of working class voters supported it.

This follows the Prime Minister’s decision to move the deadline to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles to 2035 in an overhaul of net zero pledges.

People Polling also asked voters: “In your view, have environmental-related taxes and penalties on British motorists gone too far, not far enough, or are about right?”

Of all voters, 47 per cent said it “has gone too far”, 11 per cent said “it has not gone far enough”, 17 per cent said it was about right, and the remainder said they didn’t know or preferred not to say.

When asked if the Government was “for or against motorists”, only seven per cent said it was on the side of drivers, with 40 per cent saying they were working against the best interests of motorists.

Most people also supported the move to reduce the speed limit in urban areas from 30mph to 20mph, with 45 per cent supporting the 20mph zones, with 37 per cent opposing them.

This comes as the Welsh Government deals with backlash after changing average national speed limits on restricted roads to just 20mph.

Commenting on the findings, Professor Matthew Goodwin of the University of Kent, said: “More voters oppose banning the sale of petrol and diesel cars from 2030 than support it.

“Working-class voters are especially opposed to this idea, as are pensioners, Leavers, Conservatives and northerners

“Again there are significant social divides on this question among those groups that are most likely to feel the full force of these ideas and those groups which are not.

“In my view, this shows how opposition to many of these issues is higher among the working class voters who are most likely to feel the full force of these measures and the least likely to have the financial measures to deal with them.”

Almost half of motorists also agreed that environmental taxes on drivers were too high, highlighting the expansion of the Ultra Low Emission Zone in London and the prevalence of Clean Air Zones across the country.


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Regionally, Londoners (39 per cent) are much less likely than people in the north (48 per cent) and the Midlands (50 per cent) to think they have gone too far.


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