posted 5 years ago

The ‘Sun’ newspaper launch ‘Pay Up Diesel Weasels’ Campaign

Drivers sign petition to back campaign

The UK’s biggest national newspaper ‘The Sun’ has launched a new campaign for compensation for the millions of drivers persuaded to buy diesel cars but who now face large fines as a result!

Eleven million motorists have bought ‘greener’ vehicles in the last fourteen years due to the fact that diesels were a ‘bargain’ as excise duty for petrol cars with high carbon dioxide emissions was increased. Figures show that the number of diesel car owners in the UK has rocketed from 1.6 million to 11 million in the space of a decade.

However major cities are now planning to punish diesel drivers with a £10 a day tax because of other killer fumes which are linked to fuel, the move to add a diesel-levy on the congestion charge was unveiled by London Mayor Boris Johnson last month following Britain’s failure to meet air quality targets set by the European Union. Almost 460,000 lorries, 3.3 million vans and ten million cars could expect road charge hikes unless they upgrade to newer “Euro Six” diesel vehicles and drivers whose motors fail to comply could also face lower resale values.

The ‘Sun’  is calling on the Government to compensate motorists seduced into buying diesel vehicles, by opening a scrappage-style scheme aimed specifically at such cars. The Sun proposes that drivers should be given £2,000 towards the cost of a new motor that meets environmental standards and will not face fines in the future. Motoring groups have backed the scheme, which would be similar to the scrappage initiative launched in 2009 to boost the car industry.

RAC technical director David Bizley said “there’s a lot of merit in a scrappage scheme for older diesel vehicles. It could follow the previous one that offered £2,000 off the price of a new vehicle to drivers of diesel cars more than ten years old. But the Government also need to be able to say how they can help drivers who have recently bought diesel.”

AA president Edmund King said “scrappage was incredibly successful for cars and quite revenue-neutral due to its effect on the new car industry. A scrappage scheme could also target the gross polluters.”

The Car Scrappage Scheme introduced in the 2009 budget to aid the economy and environment was a huge success. The Government agreed to provide £1,000 towards the purchase of a new car from participating dealers. Manufacturers also knocked £1,000 off the list price. Almost 400,000 cars were bought under the scheme. There is no doubt the scheme would be welcomed back. 

Drivers who wish to back the campaign can sign the petition at