My Interventions in the Automotive Industry Debate (5)


  1. Mark B
    September 21, 2023

    Good morning.

    Nevertheless, those vehicles remain significantly lower-emission over their life cycle . . .

    Assuming of course they do not spontaneously combust.

    If our kind host allows:

    We do not buy cars to save the planet. Be buy cars to get from A to B. Failure to understand this simple fact shows a lack of understanding of reality and not just the product and its use.

    The most frightening thing is, that the above individual is part of a system that makes decision that affect both mine and every other persons life in the UK.

    Very worrying.

    1. Lifelogic
      September 21, 2023

      Indeed and electric cars actually increase CO2, are far more expensive and far worse for the environment too (when you account for mining, manufacture of car and the short lived battery) plus we have no spare low carbon electricity to charge them with anyway. Not that CO2 is serious problem anyway it is just a dishonest ruse.

      So finally a touch on the breaks for the net zero lunacy, but the idiotic Sunak is still heading over the cliff just a bit more slowly.

      An excellent piece by Patrick Minford on BoE, Carney, Bailey and Sunak incompetence yesterday in the Telegraph. Heat-pumps like EV cars rarely make much sense for most properties so why up the tax payer subsidy to £7,000 they still make no sense (and we still have no spare low carbon electricity). Yes you get a bit more heat per KWH of electricity. But electricity cost far more per KWH than gas and heat pumps are far more capital expensive too.

      Just abandon the total insanity of May’s moronic net zero Sunak. A bit more CO2 tree food does actually greens the planet more than a bit less. Do not confuse clean, on balance net good, CO2 with a dirty environment.

      Lots of total drivel in Sunak’s speech, but perhaps the biggest lie was blaming the damn breach in Libya on climate chance and CO2. No Sunak it was poorly maintained dams. Damn need to be strong enough to hold back the weight of water when they are full. Far better to blame it on Cameron’s and the UK moronic bombing of the country and the turmoil that followed.

      1. Lifelogic
        September 21, 2023

        brakes, dam, I blame auto correct!

      2. Lifelogic
        September 21, 2023

        Boris Johnson warns Sunak ‘he cannot afford to falter on net zero commitments’.” He cannot afford not to Boris especially on you moronic by 2030 commitment!

        So what made Boris go from “cannot blow the skin of a rice pudding” to a deluded net zero zealot? His potty green crap wife, potty crap green father, insanity brought on by Covid or net harm Covid vaccines?

        Sunak must not only row back vigorously, but the whole deluded net zero religion needs to be rapidly & quietly ditched. He has done far to little to late so far.

        Good interview with Liz Truss on Planet Normal podcast today the weekly skeptic podcast was good too.

      3. L.Smed
        September 21, 2023

        The team on Redacted made the good case that the catastrophic flooding in Libya was so bad because the infrastructure of the country was pretty much destroyed by the Western nations of the UK, US and France.

        1. Lifelogic
          September 22, 2023

          Indeed if you do not maintain dams properly they can kill hundred of thousands. Do not live below dams as you can never ensure that they are maintained properly. Even in the UK Whaley Bridge was very nearly a large disaster.

    2. Peter
      September 21, 2023

      Parliamentary debate is not always followed by action. Politicians are now well used to just telling people what they wish to hear or simply being evasive.

      It will be there for the record of course, but life moves on.

    3. BOF
      September 21, 2023

      +1 Mark B

    4. MFD
      September 21, 2023

      ++++ yes Mark and making statements that are clearly nonsense. His socalled statement sounds like a fairytale to me.
      I use my car to holiday in Britain as I do not like being in an alloy tube with no control of getting out. In line with his fairy tales I bet my holiday contributes a lot less CO2 than his holiday flight.
      Not that it matters as its all a scam anyway

  2. Donna
    September 21, 2023

    I see Jesse Norman is a Green-CON MP who believes in unicorns, Father Christmas and 6 impossible things before breakfast.

    1. Mick
      September 21, 2023

      Agree Donna
      All these green con MPs and other green nutters have taken us all for chump’s , yesterday on the daily politics they had the joint leader of Green Party what a muppet she gave the usual rubbish and then says everyone should get help to do there homes and buy a new EV and when challenged how to fund it she didn’t have a clue thank god Caroline Lucas is stepping down at the next election and the public don’t elect anyone else from the loony fringe parties,and it’s about time the climate issue was taken by the horns and a proper debate with the climate activist and the anti climate activists so the general public can actually see what bloody idiots we are being taken for, a lot if not most of the young seem to think that our 1% net zero stays put over the U.K. they have no comprehension of our area above being contaminated with the other high polluted countries CO2 , now watch all the other parties start to promise the earth as the tories popularity start to climb higher in the polls

    2. Hope
      September 21, 2023

      Does Norman realise how stupid his remarks are? Is he that dense? No one should vote for him, he sounds unstable to me. Regurgitating crap someone told him without thinking through how utterly stupid his answer is to people’s every day lives.

  3. BW
    September 21, 2023

    I hear with the normal outrage, from the normal people, that Rishi has made an announcement before informing parliament. Parliament is no longer fit for purpose. It is now full of people who are elected purely on their identity and not the agenda which would be to the benefit of the country.
    That is why it is full of people who despise our country, our heritage, and our history.
    You only have to look at the treacherous behaviour in the house of horrors since the vote to leave. Now The Blair creature is pulling the strings of the failed head of the CPS who may be our next “Leader “.
    So when Mr Speaker spouts about democracy and procedure. Can we remind him of the two undemocratic coups that led to us having an unelected, indeed twice rejected PM. And the first speaker sacked in 300 years now in the Lords on a lovely £300+ a day.
    Democracy my backside.

    1. Lifelogic
      September 21, 2023

      Indeed. Can anyone tell me of a single positive from the Blair/Brown era? Everything they did was negative – counterproductive wars on lies, devolution, economic lunacy, Mayors, all shall go to University even with two Es or worse, the climate change act, the supreme court, the EU treaties, US extradition, the banking crash, open door immigration, ever higher taxation, dire public services… but Sunak continues with it all.

      1. Mickey Taking
        September 21, 2023

        well, a good thing did come out. The announcement, slogan if you prefer, that ‘it can only get better’ was accepted as being the truth by the younger voters. Sadly inexperience was let down when it became obvious to most that things did NOT get better.
        So taking the most ‘sincere’ urging by politicians as reality is a major mistake.

    2. Lifelogic
      September 21, 2023

      £332 per day attendance allowance tax free, plus travel expenses and subsidised restaurant facilities. This just for attending for a few minutes. It is about 3 times what a new junior doctor get paid for 8 hours work after tax but they it seems do not deserve pay a rise not even one just to keep pace with the Sunak caused inflation it seems.

  4. DOM
    September 21, 2023

    Poor Jesse, spewing out green vomit like a dog being sick after rifling through his owner’s stash of choccy bars

    Politicians who now pontificate on the evils of all things fossil are the ones who directly benefit from all things fossil.

    The hypocrisy of these grifters has been well documented but it’s the shamelessness of their public pronouncements that is sickening simply to promote their careers

    There are true environmentalists who live a true life of green and there are those vile characters who talk the talk but do not walk the walk. No substance, no shame, no remorse.

    The public will decide not government and if government imposes we will react accordingly by removing compliance and consent

    Governments, politicians, bureaucrats and activist filth should not confront the British people.

    1. Lifelogic
      September 21, 2023

      Indeed and the Kings of hypocrisy like King Charles, Prince William should keep out of politics or they will be quite rightly despised.

      1. Hope
        September 21, 2023

        The shadow green Nutter slating Sunak on GB news, when asked if he an electric car, he replied no, asked if he had a heat pump in his house, he replied No.

        It appears to me the Parliament talking shop is for MPs only without any regard to the real world or how decisions in the house of the corruptly stupid impact the lives of people in this country!

  5. Lifelogic
    September 21, 2023

    “Nevertheless, those vehicles remain significantly lower-emission over their life cycle than equivalent petrol and diesel vehicles, including the production and disposal of batteries.”

    The Minister is ill informed or perhaps just lying as. We have no spare low carbon electricity to charge them with anyway & keeping an old car running longer is far better for CO2 emissions on balance and by quite a large margin. They are heavier too, batteries short lived, tyre wear much higher plus you need vast grid improvements too. Even wind power is not zero Carbon. Anyway CO2 plant, tree and crop food is a net good, we are in a relative death of CO2 in historical terms.

    We are governed by deluded, unscientific fools.

    1. Lifelogic
      September 21, 2023

      Sunak “I know people in our country are frustrated with our politics.
      I know they feel that much gets promised, but not enough is delivered.”

      [Worse still what is delivered by Sunak and others is largely negative, big state, net zero lunacy, socialism, ever higher taxes, QE currency debasement/inflation, rip off energy cost, gross economic incompetence, vast government waste, vast net harm vaccines, HS2, woke lunacy and piss poor & declining public services often too… Not even delivered the £1m IHT threshold each promised 15 years back. Just liars and fraudsters surely?]

  6. Ian+wragg
    September 21, 2023

    Connected and autonomous mobility, what planet is this person on.
    Meanwhile here on earth we need to get about our daily life using our cars which is being actively sabotaged by ULEZ schemes, LTNs ans stupid 20 mph roads.
    We have neither the capacity ir infrastructure for her connected and autonomous pipe dream.

    1. Lifelogic
      September 21, 2023


    2. Bloke
      September 21, 2023

      If mobility is autonomous it goes wherever it likes. Where is the human control?

    3. Ian+wragg
      September 21, 2023

      Have the clowns at net zero central calculated how much power would be needed if 600,000 heat pumps were installed annually
      Assuming 2kw each that would at 12gw annually to peak demand. We can barely keep the lights on now so heaven help us in the future.
      Idiots at the top me thinks.

      1. hefner
        September 21, 2023

        6×10^5 x 2×10^3 = 12 x 10^8 ie 1.2GW
        You’re only 10 times wrong.

        1. Ian+wragg
          September 21, 2023

          Sorry missed the decimal poi.

      2. Martin in Bristol
        September 21, 2023

        It’s bit more than 2kw each Ian to heat a home as this article explains.

        1. hefner
          September 22, 2023

          Interesting, your reference heats up surfaces (sq ft) not volumes (cu ft). How reliable are those numbers in practice? Do all houses have a standard room height?
          Funny that such an obvious fact did not attract the attention of the contributor? Does he live in one foot high rooms?

    4. Atlas
      September 21, 2023

      She is trying to introduce Soviet, 1950s style, thinking (ie, we all have to take the trolley-bus, except the leaders who travel by Zil cars of course) in this as with other matters. But you only have to look at the politics of those who promote the Climate alarmist agenda to realise that this should not come as a surprise.

  7. Lifelogic
    September 21, 2023

    Suank’s speech:-

    We are making progress, including on my five priorities.

    Inflation – down again today and on track to be halved.

    Fastest growth in the G7 over the last two years.

    Debt – on target to be falling.

    The NHS – treating more patients than last year.

    And small boats – crossings significantly down on last year.

    [Hardly any progress at all other than on inflation and this by desroying the economy]

    We’ve had the fastest reduction in greenhouse gas emissions in the G7 [not really Sunak only by exporting jobs CO2 and false accounting like burning forests at Drax.]

    We’re stuck between two extremes.

    Those who want to abandon Net Zero altogether – because the costs are too high, the burdens too great or in some cases, they don’t accept the overwhelming evidence for climate change at all. [as there is zero benefit from net zero anyway and vast economic harms]

    And then there are others who argue with an ideological zeal: we must move even faster, and go even further no matter the cost or disruption to people’s lives and regardless of how much quicker we’re already moving than any other country. [the deluded religious unscientific loons]

    Both extremes are wrong. [no Sunak you & net zero are wrong]

    The test should be: do we have the fairest credible path to reach Net Zero by 2050, in a way that brings people with us? [no benefit at all in heading to net zero in the UK it is economic and environmental lunacy]

    No one can watch the floods in Libya or the extreme heat in Europe this summer, and doubt that it is real and happening. [Well indeed real – but nothing whatsoever to do with CO2 a total lie Sunak poorly maintained dams are very dangerous]

    Just consider offshore wind, where costs have fallen by 70% more than we projected in 2016. [But no one want to invest with subsidies]

    And nor am I abandoning any of our targets or commitments. [why on earth not mate they are bonkers]

    1. Lifelogic
      September 21, 2023

      The Climate Change Committee have rightly said you don’t reach net zero simply by wishing it.
      [indeed not without destroying jobs, wasting a fortune and wrecking the economy and with zero benefit so why do it]

      And I expect that by 2030, the vast majority of cars sold will be electric. Why?
      Because the costs are reducing; the range is improving; the charging infrastructure is growing. [if so it will be because government is rigging the market and not due to free choice they save not CO2 anyway compared to keeping you old car – the government still supporting the RIP Off ULEZ then]

  8. Rod Evans
    September 21, 2023

    Judging by the standard of the responses to JR’s interventions in the house on electric vehicles, we can surmise ‘talk is cheap’. The easy answers offered up are a million miles away from the actual doing of the proposed solutions.
    I particularly liked the question re taxation replacement ideas for when fossil fuel vehicles are no longer allowed. That intervention being juxta positioned with a call to reduce the 20% VAT paid on non domestic battery charging fees down to 5%?
    I can only guess the politicians in Westminster do not understand economics as well as we hoped they might.

    1. BOF
      September 21, 2023

      R E
      Your last sentence. Not even to GCSE level.

  9. Roy Grainger
    September 21, 2023

    Amusing that the answer cites “private markets” because EVs aren’t operating in a private market at all. The EV mandate and manufacturers sales % targets for EVs are government imposed. Parts of the EV manufacturing chain are subject to massive government subsidy to attract them to UK. The UK’s power generation capacity and electricity network is government managed. Government planning requirements are imposed on all new support infrastructure for EVs. There are government taxes across the entire range of goods and services associated with EVs. The one area where the government is apparently relying 100% on private initiatives is the provision of charging points across the UK – that’s why there won’t ever be enough.

    Sunak’s delay to imposing various time limits for green targets is welcome but of course we all know that is only the first delay that will have to happen. Kicking the can down the road.

    1. R.Grange
      September 21, 2023

      Roy, all Sunak has done is to float some ideas. He is going to run into serious opposition from the people that run the country. There will be legal challenges galore from the climate cabal, and of course Sunak may simply run out of road before the next election. His opponents will devote every effort to ensuring that the Tories don’t go into the next election on a vote-winning platform that they can realistically expect to implement. It will be Brexit all over again.

  10. Lifelogic
    September 21, 2023

    And then there are others who argue with an ideological zeal: we must move even faster, and go even further no matter the cost or disruption to people’s lives and regardless of how much quicker we’re already moving than any other country.

    [never liked quicker as an adverb – they may argue with “ideological zeal” indeed religious zeal but cannot rationally explain what benefits there are in reducing (actually just exporting) UK CO2 when China, USA India… will not be anyway. A bit more CO2 plant food is actually a net benefit not “pollution” Sunak time to grow up]

    1. Lifelogic
      September 21, 2023

      Now, this doesn’t mean I’m any less committed to decarbonising our homes.
      Quite the opposite. [Oh dear Sunak what on earth is the point of “decarbonising” out homes and heat pumps do not even do this really anyway Sunak if you do the full CO2 accounting plus they cost a fortune to fit and run – we have no spare low carbon electricity anyway]

  11. David Andrews
    September 21, 2023

    The futility of predictions applies as much to climate predictions as to the “activity of private markets”. Even the climate scientists say this as he would discover if he read the science section of the last IPCC report. There they point out the futility of making cloud predictions and the impossibility of tracking them in a meaningful way. Delusional is the best way to sum up the responses to your questions. Which is why compulsion for all is the green solution not individual freedom of choice.

    1. Lynn Atkinson
      September 21, 2023

      Yes. Compelling ‘private industry’ destroys it and its wisdom. So we have Ford, who is far along the road to abolishing itself and reinventing itself as an electric car manufacturer on the basis of politicians stated objectives, furious with the Sunak backpeddle.
      At this point politicians can’t win because they have painted themselves into a corner. Such a tangled web.

      PS Sir John why are your X-(tweets) jumbled? They are not displayed in any sort of date order.

  12. agricola
    September 21, 2023

    When we have sufficient atomic power and the grid to carrt it.

  13. Lifelogic
    September 21, 2023

    Anyone who suggests the way to stop dam breaches in Libya to to reduce CO2 emissions slightly in the UK is clearly a fraudster or a complete bloody fool!

    1. Rod Evans
      September 21, 2023

      ‘Either a fraudster or a complete fool.’ Or a climate alarmist….oh, same thing, as you were.

    2. MFD
      September 21, 2023

      ✔️ got it in one LL. we need a batch of hearing aids for Westminster as they cannot hearthe truth.

  14. Keith
    September 21, 2023

    The reply is absolute rubbish.

    1. Ukretired123
      September 21, 2023

      The reply is an arrogant and flippant foggy “dodge the bullet” put -down from a nobody MP who has been brain-washed with a few words of techno-speak strung together to sound holier than thou.
      In reality he has no idea and hasn’t a clue. Keep it going SJR.

    2. Barbara
      September 21, 2023

      ‘Capacity-building projects for important areas of our connected and autonomous vehicle supply chain‘

      That is gobbledegook, but I notice he is emphasising ‘capacity’ rather than output again. Capacity is of very little use when the much-vaunted ‘green’ projects never reach their capacity, and work well below it much of the time.

  15. Richard1
    September 21, 2023

    If Starmer can be got to pledge to reverse yesterday’s net zero delays and go back to banning sales of new ICE cars from 2030 and of gas and oil boilers from 2026, and also to hand control of immigration back to the EU as he’s suggested, there might be a narrow path to victory at the next election. Is he dumb enough?

  16. Sir+Joe+Soap
    September 21, 2023

    Stopped reading after
    “it is futile to predict the activity of private markets, because they so often move faster than we would imagine”
    Because this is precisely what the private sector does and the public sector doesn’t do-predict future needs.

  17. Michael Saxton
    September 21, 2023

    Mr Norman’s response is incorrect and deeply disappointing as he overlooks the huge amount of emissions emitted in the mining and production of minerals required in manufacturing EV’s. These emissions result in at least 60,000 miles of driving an EV before it begins to ‘overtake’ an equivalent ICE’s emissions. Why is Mr Norman ignoring these important facts?Why is Mr Norman seemingly oblivious to the issues and locations where rare earths are mined and the future availability of these minerals?

    1. Hat man
      September 22, 2023

      Why is Mr Norman ignoring these facts, Michael? Because the civil servants who prepare the written answer didn’t want him to know them. And he, as a government minister, obviously doesn’t want to know anything ‘his salary depends on not knowing’, as the saying goes.

  18. G
    September 21, 2023

    Hornet’s nest well and truly stirred. Just goes to show what cosy arrangements have been developed.

    After all, what company would not like customers by choice, but by compulsion under threat of heavy fines and imprisonment? That’s the equivalent of a corporate wet dream for crying out loud!…

    1. Mark B
      September 22, 2023


      Same to with government provided services. You have to pay for them whether you use them or not.

  19. a-tracy
    September 21, 2023

    OK Jesse, the government buys and leases cars, what % of them are battery, what % of them are hybrid? Everything from departmental hires to mobility cars, if it is true what you say, are you leading from the front and sharing your chargers with the general public?

    Have our councils been going green vehicle, especially the short-run vehicles that don’t need over 100 miles per day? The range is the biggest problem, time queuing for recharging when you’re away from your home base, lack of recharging facilities for those without garages and private driveways, are these people going to be forced off the road in 20 years time.

    Windmills and solar are the big energy-using plants in the UK if wind energy was so much cheaper how many of them have bought windmills or solar panels to provide energy for themselves?

  20. Bryan Harris
    September 21, 2023

    WHILE thousands die before receiving the medical treatment they need and with the number of patients on hospital waiting lists at 7.7million, or about around one in seven of the population, it is reported that NHS England has drawn up plans for three new departments called ‘Equality, Diversity and Inclusion’, ‘People and Culture’ and ‘People and Communities’, with 244 posts across the teams.

    Cane we really allow the NHS to become so woke – It will do nothing to improve the quality of its service or even it’s statistics.

    Please put a stop to this nonsense

  21. Bryan Harris
    September 21, 2023

    I fear, Sir John, that you are ‘sailing against the wind’ and talking against the already agreed narrative – the House has ‘no stomach’ for the common sense issues you raise.

    This is more than clear in the dismissive reply in the above.

    Please don’t give up repeating these obvious truths – Winston Churchill was a lone voice for too many years.

  22. iain gill
    September 21, 2023

    Re “those vehicles remain significantly lower-emission over their life cycle than equivalent petrol and diesel vehicles, including the production and disposal of batteries.” this is simply wrong. It maybe the case if only carbon pollutants are looked at, even that I doubt, but cannot be the case when the other complex pollutants of battery production and disposal are looked at, many of which are far more dangerous than a little extra carbon in the environment.

  23. Ian B
    September 21, 2023

    Sir John

    You have to ask why is it no other Member of the G7 or the G20 for that matter have reduced their CO2 outputs as fast as the UK. Down on 1990 by 73.9% for power generation. Territorial drop 49%, however World contribution has increased that saving due to the Conservative Governments import only policy.

    This is all despite the UK population going from 57million to 67 million and a GDP growth of some 75% for the same period.

    However we have made our competitors stronger, we have weakened our resilience and self reliance, the UK has placed itself in a market place that everyone else has moved away from.

    If the UK simply had a strong, resilient economy of its own, it would have the money and resources to cope with what ever is thrown at it. That is no longer Conservative Policy

  24. Ian B
    September 21, 2023

    Sir John

    Can someone in authority (what ever that means nowadays) tell us all the other Nations that have reduced their CO2 emissions at the same speed as the UK has and been intending to do.?

    The EU hasn’t, the US hasn’t neither have the Worlds big polluters India and China

  25. Pat
    September 21, 2023

    We have reached the point where our government conspires with international agencies to destroy national industry, substituted by imports under the phony carbon accounting dictated by Green zealots.

    Please continue to challenge this economic attack, which plainly increases global CO2 emissions into the one atmosphere we share

  26. George Sheard
    September 21, 2023

    There are not enough second hand electric cars on the market to supply those that cannot afford a new vehicle.

  27. BOF
    September 21, 2023

    I see that Jesse Norman has embraced the new normal and is now a master of Newspeak. Two + two = five.

  28. glen cullen
    September 21, 2023

    Should the automotive industry be led by
    (1) the government intervention policy with taxpayer subsidy limiting consumer choice or
    (2) by capitalist free market policy with consumer purchase with a wide and free choice ?

  29. Bert+Young
    September 21, 2023

    The rush into battery driven vehicles is a huge mistake and Sir John is absolutely right to dispute and challenge the move . No-one can dispute the fact that the pollution caused by the mass of vehicles on the road is something that has to change ; there are better alternatives particularly with Hydrogen but there has been little initiative by the auto industry in this direction . Science centres and Government initiatives across the world must concentrate and exploit research for the cure .

  30. oldwulf
    September 21, 2023


    It seems that quotas for the sale of electric vehicles remain in place so ….. the reply seems a little disingenuous when it naively refers to “private markets” and “…the way in which electrification has moved up the range and weight curves over the past few years” ?

    BBC News – Electric cars: Firms still forced to sell more despite petrol ban delay

  31. forthurst
    September 21, 2023

    Now Elon Musk is writing parliamentary answers; whatever next?

  32. Peter
    September 21, 2023

    Lifelogic 9 out of 19 posts – nearly 50%.

  33. Denis+Cooper
    September 21, 2023

    Off topic, who decided that this Ed Vaizey character should be an unelected legislator-for-life?

    He took an Oath of Allegiance to the Crown, and renewed it last year, but here he is on Politics Live today, 8 minutes in, making it clear to all where his primary loyalty really lies:

    “It’s good to see a Brexiteer like Rishi Sunak seeing the light and aligning us with Europe, which is really the way forward, that we have to align our regulations with Europe, our biggest market.”

    I’ve borrowed a book from our local library which asks: “What went wrong with Brexit?”, but before I’ve read it I already know the correct answer: “Too many people like Ed Vaizey in both Houses of Parliament”.

    1. mancunius
      September 21, 2023

      I’m afraid you may find that book rather misleading in its title. Its author believes that what went wrong with Brexit was leaving the EU, and the only thing that can help us now is complete, helplessly passive alignment and agreement with the EU’s every whim. Much the same as Starmer, in fact.

  34. Keith from Leeds
    September 21, 2023

    Well, Sir John, your patient persistence is paying off. At last, the start of some common sense regarding the Net Zero nonsense, even though our deluded PM says he is still committed to the 2050 target. Until we repeal the nonsensical legal requirement to hit Net Zero, we are still on the path to madness and destroying the UK economy. It is incredible that our MPs have allowed it to get to this point, and some are still bleating about the need to go faster to Net Zero. Can we please be told how many MPs and senior Civil Servants are driving electric cars and who have installed heat pumps in their homes? Or is it a case of you doing what I say, not what I do?
    Can we have a law requiring all MPs only to have EV cars and to heat their homes with heat pumps?

  35. XY
    September 21, 2023

    Three phrases/assertions stood out:

    (1) “Nevertheless, those vehicles remain significantly lower-emission over their life cycle than equivalent petrol and diesel vehicles, including the production and disposal of batteries.”

    That is simply untrue. He should be challenged with the evidence.

    (2) “Capacity-building projects for important areas of our connected and autonomous vehicle supply chain are already starting to take place.”

    Capacity for what, exactly? Current technology cannot store electricity efficiently. When the wind doesn’t blow, there will be no energy output. Unfortunately, when the wind blows too hard, they need to shut down the turbines as well.

    What will power 40 million vehicles when there’s no renewable energy, now and in the foreseeable future?
    It doesn’t matter how much generating capacity you create if there are times hen it produces zero output. Nuclear is the only option for an electricity-based future in a country such as the UK.

    (3) “Connected and autonomous mobility will be the future; it will be an electric future, a zero-emission future, and one that is powered by the investments and leadership being provided now, with the private sector, by this Government”.

    It will be an electric future… another assertion which shows that synthetic fuels are not being seriously considered, if they are considered at all.

    One has to wonder if the conspiracy theorists are right – perhaps there are forces at work aiming to reduce the freedom to travel of the proletariat.

  36. iain gill
    September 21, 2023

    I see Texas has declared a national emergency, and called out the national guard, independently of the US government. Using the national guard to reinforce the border, and deal with the illegal immigration.

    I am sure the Kent local authorities would do the same here if they could.

  37. Eric Powell
    September 21, 2023

    Meanwhile, in the real world, some Germans are recovering from their self induced
    stupor. In North Rhine Westphalia the energy giant RWE has started to dismantle their
    wind farms and opened Lignite mines to fuel their power stations.

    It,s a funny old world innit!!

  38. glen cullen
    September 21, 2023

    ‘On cars, the proposed proportion range in 2024 is 20-30%. The Net-Zero Strategy is predicated on a 22% mandate in 2024, increasing to 52% through to 2028. For vans, the proposed proportion range in 2024 is 8-15%. The aims on vans fall short of what the Climate Change Committee (CCC) has recommended – a 34% proportion range in 2024, scaling to 79% in 2028’
    This communist state is still dictating what manufacturers build and sell …and our MPs aren’t concerned

    1. Mark B
      September 22, 2023

      Apart from war, nothing drives change more than cold and hunger.

  39. Mark
    September 21, 2023

    I think what Norman was trying to say was that in future you will own nothing and transport will only be provided by “connected autonomous mobility”, which will have about the same degree of autonomy as a Soviet Autonomous Socialist Republic. The amount of available transport will be dictated by government, solving the problem by restricting supply.

  40. mancunius
    September 21, 2023

    “powered by the investments and leadership being provided now, with the private sector, by this Government.”
    One has to laugh: Treasury politicians simply cannot let go of their lordly habits of continental state corporatist dirigisme, incapable of understanding that the Government ‘providing investments and leadership with the private sector’ means that the private sector will not be allowed to operate freely. Mel Stride’s idea of the private sector seems to be a few tame boffins the government hires to solve a tech problem, and a little man round the corner to make the bits to civil service specifications.

    SEPTEMBER 21, 2023

    1. mancunius
      September 21, 2023

      Sorry, for Mel Stride read Jesse Norman!
      (Or as an absent-minded 19c preacher said at the end of his sermon, as he suddenly recollected what he’d been saying: ‘Pray, passim, for Aristotle, read St Paul.’)

  41. David
    September 21, 2023

    Jesse Norman’s answer sounds like standard government waffle I’m afraid. I don’t follow “Connected and autonomous mobility”. It would help to use plain English.

    Try to minimise your driving. If you have a recent diesel car – e.g. 2018 – keep and maintain it well as long as possible. That avoids the GHG emissions involved in making a new electric car. These are higher, as we know, than the emissions in making a petrol or diesel car.

    Just as when the first diesel passenger car appeared 45 years ago, diesel cars emit fewer GHGs than petrol cars in normal use, other things being equal. The diesel ‘pollution scare’ was ultra-confusing. I doubt even 0.1% of the population knew the best/least bad option.

    New or recent diesel cars may emit fewer particles than an electric car, i.e. the total PM 2.5 particles coming from these four sources:

    1) exhaust
    2) tyre wear
    3) brake wear
    4) road wear.

    Has the government evaluated if this could actually be true? We generally accept that PM 2.5 particles are pretty bad for people’s health. CO2 in normal concentrations isn’t harmful. We don’t know how to eliminate tyre wear or road wear. Both of them become higher if the vehicles become heavier.

    Yes, energy policy is complicated. But we’re entitled to expect well-paid civil servants to brief ministers correctly and avoid writing meaningless verbiage.

  42. agricola
    September 21, 2023

    SJR here is a thought for the UK that is already a reality in Sweden, China, USA, and Turkey. It is not universal in those countries but more than others they are making use of geothermal power to heat water for varying purposes.
    The geothermal gradient is 25° / 30° per 1000 meters of drilled depth. Rather than bully the population into acquiring costly and questionably efficient heat pumps , consider community geothermal units to provide domestic hot water for bathing and central heating. It requires someone better qualified than me to do the maths on required drilling depth, volume of water that can be heated, and consequent number of dwellings that can be served. It would be a community service paid for like electricity and gas.
    I would start by talking to the Swedes and Swedish companies engaged in this to ascertain costs. You would then know if it could be done on a scale that would appeal to UK property owners. The place to start would be new build housing estates. Give it some thought.

    1. Mark
      September 21, 2023

      You will be pleased to know that the recent AR5 CFD auction sanctioned 3 geothermal projects, all in Cornwall where the rocks get more radioactive heating. Two of them are 5MW apiece, while the third is just 2MW. The cost indexed to 2023 is just under £160/MWh, which is not a bargain price, being only slightly below what we pay for operational wind CFDs, and well above recent market prices. Details of all the AR5 auction awards are on this mouseover map:

  43. Original Richard
    September 21, 2023

    Mark :

    Your interpretation is correct.

    However, as a classics scholar, I doubt he even understands the words he has been given to spout out in the Chamber and the fact that he is made Minister of State for Decarbonisation & Technology is an insult to the people of the UK.

    I will not be voting for any party that supports Net Zero and continues to put classics, languages (ancient and modern), history (ancient and modern), PPE, law, and all the other non-stem subject graduates in such positions.

    1. Peter
      September 22, 2023


      Are you Lifelogic in disguise?

  44. a-tracy
    September 22, 2023

    Some sectors of the UK and EU motor industry are concerned about looming 10% tariffs on electric cars.

    What is Kemi doing about this to open our market up to and from the rest of the world? Are we all going to be driving more affordable Chinese Japanese, and Korean models?

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