The government of Denmark is proposing a total ban on the sale of new gasoline and diesel cars after 2030 and hybrid vehicles after 2035.  Getty Images photo by Michal Krakowiak.

Denmark plan to be presented to parliament next week

The government of Denmark is proposing to ban sales of new gasoline and diesel cars beginning in 2030 and hybrid vehicles after 2035 to promote electric only vehicles to cut pollution and fight climate change.

This announcement comes one day after the United Nations released its climate report which called on world leaders to undertake urgent actions to fight the threat of climate change.

Two years ago, the Danish government was roundly criticized for increasing taxes on EVs which cut sales from over 3 per cent of all new cars to nearly zero.  As part of the announcement on Tuesday, the government said it is following the lead of a number of countries making the daunting shift from fossil fuel powered vehicles to EVs.

Danish Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen told parliament “It is a big ambition that will be hard to achieve. But that’s exactly why we need to try”.

Parliamentary approval is required for the plan to become law.  Next week, the Danish government will be presented with the proposal.

The ban on gasoline and diesel powered vehicles dovetails with Denmark’s goal to become fossil fuel free by 2050.  In the 1970’s, Denmark began development of commercial wind power, and in 2017, the country’s wind power sector produced the equivalent of 43.4 per cent of Denmark’s total electricity consumption.

To date, Britain and France have said they will ban new gasoline and diesel cars from 2040.  In Sweden, electric car sales make up over 7 per cent of all new car sales and in Norway, over half of all new cars are electric or hybrid vehicles.

As well, mayors or major international cities, including Paris, Madrid, Mexico City and Athens say they will ban diesel vehicles from their city centres by 2025.

Last year, Volvo said it will phase out vehicles powered only by an internal combustion engine by 2019.  All Volvos launched after 2019 will be EVs or hybrids.