The EU/UK volte face on diesels

EU/UK policy of many years was to encourage the diesel car as part of the solution to excess CO2 . Diesels are more fuel efficient so less CO2 is generated per mile travelled than a petrol vehicle. The UK was particularly keen on this policy, and successful at attracting substantial new investment in diesel car engine manufacture and diesel car assembly. Jaguar Land Rover, for example, moved to producing a range of vehicles where two thirds sold were diesel. The UK became a centre for excellence and research in passenger car diesel technology.

More recently the EU has discovered that its emissions tests were not stringent enough to prevent higher levels of Sox and Nox from diesels, and that these gases do create problems in the air we breathe. The EU has now set more severe standards and tougher tests to enforce them, so the modern Euro 6 diesel car engine is around the same as a patrol engine car when it comes to unpleasant exhaust gas and particulates, with both types of engine now hitting high standards of cleanliness.

During this major switch of approach the passenger car  diesel engine has moved from environmental poster product to environmental problem. The politicians who were keen to encourage diesels, are now keen to stop them even though they have now set much tougher standards for diesel engines which they think are fine. There is  a competition to see which town or city can be more severe on diesel vehicles by imposing bans or extra taxes. The UK Treasury decided to impose much higher Vehicle Excise Duty on new diesels, especially for expensive vehicles, as part of it attempts to get more people to buy an electric car.

The result of this change at EU and UK government level is entirely predictable, and was indeed forecast here. There has been a collapse in the sale of new diesel cars, with more motorists deciding to put off buying new until a new more stable legislative approach to car engines has settled down, and other motorists unable to afford the tax rises placed on new vehicles.

In the UK it is especially perverse. The government claims to want a bigger and more vibrant motor industry here in the UK, and is very worried by any possible threat to it. Yet at the same time its policy has done serial damage to the diesel car sector, the very sector they had most praised and had done most to build up in previous years.

Nissan drew attention to these issues in its recent decision not to go ahead with new assembly and extra capacity for a diesel vehicle at Sunderland. It will make what it needs in Japan instead. Car makers experiencing a big fall in diesel car sales are shorter of cash, profit and sales than they wished, so of course they are going to cut their investment plans. The problem for the UK is government action which has been so successful in building a diesel car industry is now leading the attack on it.


  1. Peter
    February 5, 2019

    High mileage was often necessary to justify the extra purchase cost of diesel vehicles in the U.K. Now further changes will add to the cost of ownership.

    However other vehicles are also subject to increased cost. In London a congestion charge will extend further out from the city centre.

    So we have one set of politicians adding to motoring costs, then another set complaining that new vehicle purchase figures are not as high as they would like.

    1. oldtimer
      February 5, 2019

      It was the Volkswagen Group that led that campaign to incentives diesels and demonise petrol engines way back circa the time of the Kyoto treaty. Then they believed they had a competitive edge with diesels. Their influence on the German government and that government’s influence on the EU won the day. There was a snag with this approach. Politicians, always ever eager to outbid each other with virtue signalling, kept pushing up the regulatory demands ahead of the industry’s ability to keep pace with them. VW had a simple answer: fix the ECU that controls emissions so that it delivers a compliant engine when it recognises it is on an engine dynamometer. This was conclusively revealed by two German engineers when they brilliantly reverse engineered the guilty ECU.

      The push for diesels has proved to be one of the most environmentally damaging initiatives the EU has ever introduced. At great expense, it is possible to control diesel emissions. But the moment this is achieved those same politicians are now on another tack, pushing electrification way ahead of the industry’s capacity to deliver or the electricity grids ability to support. And guess which company is leading the charge to electrification? Why, it is VW. Who else?

    2. Hope
      February 5, 2019

      Hammond could have imposed sanctions or called formit on German cars as,a health hazard to UK citizens. Instead Hammond taxed and punished U.K. Consumers and citizens! Trump won penalties against VW. Forced,to replace cars and pay substantial amount of fines.

      We read today £61 million given to Nissan by U.K. Govt as a sweetener to build its cars here. Why did Greg Clarke fail to mention this when on his remain campaign the other day blaiming nrext for Nissans change of heart? He could have resigned for his failure of course.

      Tory govt is worse by the day. More MPs allowed to add their five penny worth to EU. Why? Why is May allowing this, it should be the official negotiators only to have solid line of approach.

      The swamp needs clearing. All those 18 Tory MPs who accepted donations from grassroots on the manifesto pledges, leaflet campaigns and supporting the referendum result claims should now hand the money back or accept they defrauded their supporters. What is your party going to do about these MPs in the first instance and will they be rferred to the police? I appreciate acting on the maifesto has no or little legal standing on its own but obtaining money from its contents is another matter.

    3. Lifelogic
      February 5, 2019

      So we have one set of politicians adding to motoring costs – Well yes indeed and also adding to housing costs, energy costs, employment costs, food costs, insurance costs, clothing costs, taxi costs, education costs, moving home costs, banking costs, transport costs, water and sewerage costs, pension costs, planning costs, building costs, healthcare costs …… this is just what politicians and bureaucrats so love to do.

      They are in the tax to death, over regulate, borrow and waste most of the money industries.

      1. Chris
        February 6, 2019

        Lifelogic, they should take a leaf out of President Trump’s book. His State of the Union address last night was excellent and very uplifting and this warning about the threats from socialism i.e. government coercion, domination and control were very ap. We have far too much socialism here with Theresa May and her government. Hardly surprising given that we are effectively governed by the EU which in itself is a Marxist type project.

        “”Here in the United States, we are alarmed by the new calls to adopt socialism in our country. America was founded on liberty and independence, and not government coercion, domination and control. We are born free and we will stay free…America will never be a socialist country.”

    4. Dennis Zoff
      February 5, 2019

      The UK is a Business:

      Sadly the current UK Government is indecisive in strategic management, ineffective running a notional corporate business, ineffectual running a budget, incapable of wealth creation, and therefore it follows incapable of running a country!

      When a business is run by incompetents, and those incompetents cannot be removed, the resultant is what we in see in Westminster….rank nugatory amateurishness!

      Am I being too harsh, or is it how so many feel about our modern political system? The Brexit shenanigans have opened the Government kimono and given the citizens a rather contemptuous glimpse of our so-called political ruling class, and what a sorry state it is in!

      1. David Price
        February 6, 2019

        I agree though think you are not being harsh enough.

        I would also include the civil service and MSM in the sweep of incompetence and malevolence towards the electorate who dare to think differently.

  2. Mark B
    February 5, 2019

    Good morning.

    No matter what regulations you impose they are worthless when companie cheat. And these cheats are not prosecuted in the UK. These cheats, through their false figures, fooled people into buying their cars. Now we potentially have a worse situation where, those self same cheats are creating an electric vehicle market which simply cannot be sustained.

    Out membership of the EU and the EU’s top down approach has removed the government from one that listens and then acts, to one that just follows orders. When our MP’s have to accept responsibility for both their actions and inactions we will, over time, have better and more joined up thinking and government.

    1. Iain Gill
      February 5, 2019

      yep VW have been forced to buy back large numbers of diesel cars in the US, why has this not happened here?

      1. L Jones
        February 5, 2019

        I have a VW. Very pleased with it thus far. But never EVER again.

    2. Hope
      February 5, 2019


      Why do ministers or MPs not resign any more? There are clear policy failures here. I think we need to read the terms of the govt sweetner to Nissan. Why has Greg Clarke not disclosed all the facts about Nissans change of heart not to build SUVs here

      Letwin claimed in Parliament that to implement the will of the people was far more important than any issue before it! He has now voted for the exact opposite and told his association that he did not beleive in the manifesto. It demonstrates to me what a shyster he is. He let people raise funds and campaign for him on issues he did not believe in! Any person with any sense of conscience, honour or decency would not stand to be elected. He should go voluntarily if not got rid of by his association.

      As Letwin is not standing again even more reason for his association to get on with it, like today. Time for Tory grassroots to fight back. If CCHQ does not like it, withdraw your support to raise funds deliver leaflets etc. Same applies to the 17 others.

    3. BOF
      February 5, 2019

      Yes Mark B, but they fight having to accept that responsibility every inch of the way. We may indeed need as many replacements as we can muster,come election time.

    4. Mark
      February 5, 2019

      I do not admire the faux indignation of the bureaucrats who wrote the regulations on vehicle testing. They created laboratory tests that could be passed in laboratory conditions so they could smugly pretend that they were clamping down on real emissions extremely hard and earn lots of greenie points, instead of considering the real world.

      Had they done that, they would have been concerned with the art of the possible in terms of reducing real emissions, and with promoting measures that would reduce the impact of emissions instead of creating pollution hotspots through cultivating traffic jams, 20mph speed limits and road humps etc.

      Meanwhile the reality is that NOx emissions have been falling, and passenger cars are in any case a small component of the overall NOx emissions, as the chart at this link shows (it’s worth resetting the start point to 1970, and also examining the individual components – NOx emissions from passenger cars peaked in 1990 at 853kt and reduced to 146kt in 2016 – an 83% reduction):

      The link also has a good summary of the main legislative and other changes over the years that helps to explain the chart trends.

      1. Mark
        February 6, 2019

        The link is a BEIS website!

  3. Excalibur
    February 5, 2019

    This lucid explanation exposes, once again, JR, the inability of government to get almost anything right.

    1. Leslie Singleton
      February 5, 2019

      Dear Excalibur–Worse than that it is, rather, a near certainty they will actively get it wrong–Not getting it right would be merely neutral

  4. Denis Cooper
    February 5, 2019

    I see that the liar, cheat, hypocrite and traitor who we now have as Prime Minister is going to make a speech in Northern Ireland, and frankly I dread what she will say as it is most likely going to be yet another betrayal. Whether it would help to get rid of her favourite civil service Brexit adviser Oliver Robbins is a moot point, I can only say that at least it could no harm and it would be a good thing if MPs passed a resolution calling for his removal.

    1. Denis Cooper
      February 5, 2019

      “Ireland’s deputy leader, Simon Coveney, welcomed May’s visit to Northern Ireland, but said attempts to replace the backstop with other arrangements amounted to little more than “wishful thinking.””

      So when would the Irish government ever agree to any alternative arrangement which did not keep at least Northern Ireland, and preferably the whole of the UK, under the economic thumb of the EU?

      From November 26th 2017:

      “Brexit: Remain in customs union and single market to solve border issue, Ireland’s European commissioner tells May”

      And of course Labour’s Keir Starmer is very happy with that prospect.

      1. Lifelogic
        February 5, 2019

        Brexit means sweet FA to May. She is appalling and dishonest, even worse than John Major. She will bury the party in a similar way unless she is stopped. She is also a misguided tax and regulate to death socialist. Also an electoral liability, even against the dire prospect of Corbyn/Mc Donnall/SNP.

        It could be so different with a sound leader and a few more real Tory MPs

        1. Stephen Priest
          February 5, 2019

          Had May been on the HMS Victory instead of Nelson she would have attacked the French and Spanish Fleets without any guns.

      2. Stephen Priest
        February 5, 2019

        What May will never say but should say: “Even if the United Kingdom were to leave without a deal there will be no so called hard border. Therefore any “hard” border with be entirely the fault of Leo Varadkar and the European Union.

        How long before we hear “United Kingdom to remain in the European Union because. unless you are a high minded lawyer like Keir Starmer or Dominic Grieve, you do not have intelligence to see the wonders of the EU.”?

        1. Lifelogic
          February 5, 2019

          Exactly. But she is so daftthat she cannot see this.

      3. SecretPeople
        February 5, 2019

        See Andrea Jenkyns’ Twitter page. She claims Selmayr told her that our government has neither asked him to remove the backstop nor reopen the withdrawal agreement.

        1. Chris
          February 5, 2019

          She is not the first person to have reported that either, SP. I can quite believe it of May.

        2. L Jones
          February 5, 2019

          ”…. asked him…” Says it all, really.

      4. Original Richard
        February 5, 2019

        The EU, Mrs May and her EU supporting colleagues in the HoC are inconsistent over the Ireland/N.I. backstop.

        On the one hand they say there is no known solution to the border issue, technical or otherwise, but at the same time say that if we fall into the backstop it would only be “temporary”.

        How do they know it would only be temporary if they say there is no known solution ?

        They’re taking us all for fools in order to either keep the UK permanently in the EU’s institutions, or until they have got everything they want from the “Future Relationship” negotiations and/or achieved the unification of the island of Ireland.

        To sign the WA would be a terrible mistake for the UK.

        1. Denis Cooper
          February 6, 2019

          “How do they know it would only be temporary if they say there is no known solution?”

          Precisely; their idea is that it would be temporary in the sense that the original agreement would be temporary, but its permanent replacement would have the same legal effect.

      5. acorn
        February 5, 2019

        “I see that the liar, cheat, hypocrite and traitor who we now have as Prime Minister …” says Denis. Now if I had posted that “Steve” would be accusing me of nastiness and being vitriolic!

        Anyway, “Brexit: Remain in customs union and single market to solve border issue, Ireland’s European commissioner tells May”.

        Is still the best solution for Brexit Great Britain and a possible reunited Ireland.

        1. Denis Cooper
          February 6, 2019

          Believe me, acorn, every word was carefully chosen.

        2. libertarian
          February 6, 2019


          No it isn’t as you haven’t got the faintest idea about international trade its not surprising you’re like them totally wrong

          1) There isn’t a single market

          2) customs union is a protectionist racket , with exactly the same policy as Trump

          Why would there be any benefit to a united Ireland when majority of people dont want it ?

        3. Steve
          February 6, 2019


          “…….and a possible reunited Ireland.”

          And there be the nail, hit firmly on the head.

      6. Steve
        February 5, 2019

        Denis Cooper

        “Brexit: Remain in customs union and single market to solve border issue, Ireland’s European commissioner tells May”

        Yes I saw that, and it disgusts me to discover that cheeky sod assumes a right to interfere.

        I hope we leave on no deal, then if the Eireann – Europeans want access to UK channel ports, we should deny them, just for old times’ sake.

      7. georgeP
        February 5, 2019

        Yes, and tomorrow she is going to tell the DUP to get off their high horse..she has spent today talking and listening to ordinary NI business leaders, farming organisations etc etc and has received a totally different message from what the DUP and Lord Trimble have being saying. So it looks loke the WA will be presented again 15th Feb and will be voted through with the help of Labour middle ground, and DUP or no DUP.

    2. Captain Peacock
      February 5, 2019

      May is prepared to pay any price to stop Brexit even an election which on current form the Tories will loose. But not to worry plenty well paid ‘speaking tours’ where she will get her payoff.

      1. Martin R
        February 5, 2019

        Someone would want to pay their hard earned, good money, to listen to May? Could anyone possibly be so unbelievably stupid? It won’t happen any way because the possibility of winkling her out of Downing Street now she’s become a fixture there is vanishingly small.

        1. Bob
          February 5, 2019

          “Could anyone possibly be so unbelievably stupid?”

          They don’t pay to hear them speak, they pay for services rendered while in office, the speeches are just window dressing. Just look at the amount of money thrown at George Osborne when he left office. They often call it “consultancy fees”.

      2. John Downes
        February 5, 2019

        If Mrs May thinks that she is capable of generating income based on charging to hear her talk…… well the idea is just risible.

      3. Den
        February 5, 2019

        Mrs May belittles her position of Leader of the Government of Britain each time she runs off to speak to others. She is more servant than Master and is not fit to be called the British Prime Minister. She is more a Liberal than a Conservative and should resign and join the ranks of the former where she truly belongs.
        Meanwhile, we can leave the EU under the true Brexit of “No Deal”.

      4. Anonymous
        February 5, 2019

        There is only one International Gonk Convention that I can think of. It raised about £3.50 auctioning off a car cleaning kit and garden gnome wearing a blue and yellow hat.

        Good fun but unable to pay Mrs May very much.

    3. Ian wragg
      February 5, 2019

      Denis. She is going to propose the whole of the UK remains in the Customs Union. As the WA is mainly her Chequers proposal that would complete the betrayal.

      1. Steve
        February 5, 2019

        Ian wragg

        “She is going to propose the whole of the UK remains in the Customs Union.”

        Bring it. Let her dare try.

    4. Richard1
      February 5, 2019

      Do calm down I do not think debate is enhanced by the use of these kind of insults. We see it more and more on both sides of the Brexit debate.

      1. Lifelogic
        February 5, 2019

        But the insults are clearly richly deserved. Anything which cannot be changed the moment we finally get a proper government is unacceptable. May is very clearly a fraud, a liar, an idiotic socialist and an electoral liability.

        It is all thanks to Gove that we have had to suffer this appalling woman.

      2. Denis Cooper
        February 6, 2019

        I’m calm enough, thanks, and my language is chosen carefully enough.

        1. Stred
          February 6, 2019

          Every word is provable by reference to the record of her deceit over the past year. Even before then, as with the EAW being forced through parliament without proper debate. She disgraces her country.

    5. Andy
      February 5, 2019

      It is amusing to see the pickle Brexiteers are in.

      You want free and frictionless access to the single market. You can only have this if you follow the rules and regulations of the single market.

      It is not the EU’s fault that you do not understand the rules. You can not take back control or a non-existent border.

      The price of Brexit is Northern Ireland – and probably Scotland too.

      They little Englanders have to decide whether they hate the European Union more than they love the United Kingdom.

      Stop whinging about the impact of YOUR decision. Either come up with a solution or let the grown ups take charge.

      Reply Most leave voters want to leave with no Withdrawal Agreement

      1. Anonymous
        February 6, 2019

        The single market certainly isn’t free.

        It costs you your nation’s independence, you drooling dolt.

      2. Denis Cooper
        February 6, 2019

        Remind me, Andy, does every country in the world which exports to the EU have to adopt the entire body of EU law as its own supreme law?

        1. Stred
          February 6, 2019

          The dunce obviously does think so and can’t work out that the ROW exports and has access to the market.

      3. libertarian
        February 6, 2019


        As you have no business experience at all its not surprising you talk drivel

        I have frictionless trade all over the world .

        The EU INTERNAL MARKET in goods is anything but free and if you’d ever done business in Germany you would know its not frictionless either

        86% of our economy is in services and the EU doesn’t have a market in services because they, like you are an outdated throwback 20th century dinosaur

        Sadly you will have to get by without exploiting East European workers

    6. Leslie Singleton
      February 5, 2019

      Dear Denis–Continues utterly beyond belief that arguably the country’s one two and three (PM, Hammond, Robbins) re Brexit hate the idea. Any wonder a complete disaster?

    7. Denis Cooper
      February 5, 2019

      Here is the speech she gave in Belfast on July 20th 2018:

      and in the light of subsequent events it is especially worth reading two sections, those headed “No hard border” and “Our White Paper”.

      As I may have mentioned before, there is nothing in Article 50 TEU to say that a member state which decides to leave the EU shall bear responsibility for sorting out problems which may be caused by its withdrawal, and nor is there anything about the withdrawing member state having to accept that the EU is always right during every stage of the withdrawal process.

      1. L Jones
        February 5, 2019

        Denis – we need more people saying this. I know it’s stating the bl**ding obvious, but it’s got to be said.
        Why is it that we’re always beating ourselves up? Mea culpa?

    8. Mark
      February 5, 2019

      Like the overwhelming Europarl vote calling for Selmayr’s resignation, it would probably be ignored.

    9. Martin R
      February 5, 2019

      The worst Tory PM ever by a long chalk, even outdoing Cameron and Heath for sheer bloody minded uselessness, and the only prospect of her going is to be replaced by Corbyn after an election, or if not by one of her equally appalling fellow travellers. Cry the beloved country, or at least what remains of it.

      1. Lifelogic
        February 5, 2019

        Major was even worse but could be partially forgiven as he is clearly very dim indeed.

    10. Denis Cooper
      February 5, 2019

      Oh, look at this utterly stupid promise, as stupid as ruling out “no deal”, she might just as well have said to the Irish government and the EU:

      “Say what I must give you so you won’t erect a hard border on your side.”

      “Northern Ireland does not have to rely on the Irish government or the European Union to prevent a return to borders of the past. The UK government will not let that happen, I will not let that happen.”

      Really? So what is she going to do if the EU starts putting up barriers and customs houses? Lead raiding parties across at night to dismantle them?

      John Manley of Irish News:

      “Prime Minister, you’ve told us that you won’t allow a hard border to happen. Are you telling us therefore that the only circumstances will be, if there is hard border, if the EU imposes one?”

      The nub of Theresa May’s reply, leaving out the waffle:

      “… we would do everything in our power to to avoid a hard border … ”

      Like, asking the EU to name its price for agreeing not to impose a hard border; and as Sammy Wilson said earlier today that price would include the UK staying under the rules of the EU Customs Union and the EU Single Market.

      Of course something which would be within the power of the UK government and Parliament would be to pass and enforce a new UK law to control what goods could be carried across the land border into the Irish Republic; and if present UK law is a sufficient guarantee that there is no need for routine checks on goods as they cross the border then a new UK law could also provide that guarantee.

  5. Bill Grand
    February 5, 2019

    Nissan have moved production because of the damage done by Brexit. The great Mrs Thatcher lured a number of Japanese firms to the UK thanks to her brilliant creation, the EU single market. Now they are leaving, as the Conservative Party has been hijacked by political pigmies, inward looking nationalists and little Englanders who have no understanding of how trade and investment works.

    1. Ian wragg
      February 5, 2019

      If that were the case they would have built it in another EU country.
      As they are going to build it in Japan suggests they have no confidence in the EU.
      More fake news.

      1. TRP
        February 5, 2019

        The Nissan X-Trail has been built in Japan since 2001. It was only the newest version of the same model that could have been built in the UK.

        1. libertarian
          February 6, 2019


          Except that there is now no market in Europe for diesel cars .

          I see Toyota are starting production of the Corolla in the UK , but I can’t find your post about it anywhere

    2. Edward2
      February 5, 2019

      Production isn’t moving.
      Nissan never made the X Trail in the UK and if you are correct, that it is all about the single market, it is odd that Nissan will carry on making the X Trail in Japan not in Europe.

      1. TRP
        February 5, 2019

        Why is it so strange, now that there is Japan-EU trade deal that will decrease the duties smoothly till 2022.

        1. Edward2
          February 5, 2019

          Very little effect on the overall decision TRP
          Japan is set up to build the X Trail and so it will continue.
          Sunderland have no job losses.
          They continue witj several important models including the biggest selling electric car in Europe the Leaf
          Sadly you are obsessed that everything that happens is all due to brecit.

        2. libertarian
          February 6, 2019


          Well its strange because you remainers keep telling us the markets are all about proximity and seeing as Nissan and its French partners have factories in Europe , if this was Brexit inspired it would be logical to base production in the EU . Of course its not Brexit linked at all , hence the move to RETAIN production in Japan

          You dont seem to have posted about Liberty’s new £120m Lochaber alloy wheel factory coming on stream , or record sales in the US for JLR, or UK commercial vehicle manufacturing grows by 8.5%

          1. TRP
            February 7, 2019

            Dear libertarian, what bee do you have in your bonnet? Where did I talk about proximity? Are you paid as this site’s attack dog? I hope it is not much as you seem rather limited in your arguments.

    3. Arthur Wrightiss
      February 5, 2019


    4. Narrow Shoulders
      February 5, 2019

      Now they are leaving, as the single market has been hijacked by failed political pigmies, protectionist supra nationalists and left leaning Euro fanatics who have no understanding of how trade and investment works without resorting to dictat

      Same coin, other side Bill

    5. Old Albion
      February 5, 2019

      Do you work for the BBC, Bill?

    6. Roy Grainger
      February 5, 2019

      Fine, apart from the fact that Japan, where they are moving production, isn’t in the EU. So your post is nonsense.

    7. Original Richard
      February 5, 2019

      Nissan has moved the production of a new vehicle back to Japan and NOT to the rEU so it was clearly not a Brexit related move.

      More probably because of the new EU/Japan trade deal which will see the import duties on Japanese built vehicles reduced to zero.

      In fact, it could be argued that if the UK imposes 10% tariffs on imported cars then Nissan would be more likely to keep their UK factory.

      BTW, never forget that 43% of Nissan is owned by Renault.

    8. Stephen Priest
      February 5, 2019

      Why aren’t Nissan setting up this plant in the EU?

    9. Hope
      February 5, 2019

      Well said. What action was taken against the German car companies who sold cars by the thousands to cheat the British public and cause a health hazard? What ismClarke and Hammond doing about it?

    10. Kevin
      February 5, 2019

      So we need to be in the Single Market in order to attract investment from an island nation that has made a success of itself while not being in the Single Market?

      1. Andy
        February 5, 2019

        Yes – we need to be in the single market to attract investment from Japan.

        Japan is interested in tariff and bureaucracy free access to a market of half a billion of the world’s wealthiest consumers.

        Access to a protectionist market of 65m is, well, an irrelevance. They can find that much closer to home.

        1. Edward2
          February 5, 2019

          When free of EU rules we can reduce corporate taxes and red tape to encourage countries like Japan to invrst here.

        2. Kevin
          February 5, 2019

          The emphasis was on the “island nation that has made a success of itself while not being in the Single Market”.

    11. A different Simon
      February 5, 2019

      What about the car industry in the rest of Western Europe ?

      As Mark Wadsworth points out on his blog , the following countries car production is moving out of Western Europe to Eastern Europe / Far East too .

      Would that be because of Brexit .. or perhaps because of wage differences and the coming scarcity of energy in Western Europe ?

      – State owned Renault and Peugeot are creating their new capacity in Eastern Europe rather than France .
      – Fiat 500 is made in Eastern Europe rather than Italy
      – New VW capacity is in Eastern Europe , not Western and has been for the last 15 years .
      – Toyota and Ford are expanding in Turkey

      It’s pretty damn obvious that as our existing automotive plants get old and obsolete , new investment will be in plants in cheaper labour economies .

      The only future for a UK based car industry is for a British owned one like British Leyland .

      1. Mitchel
        February 6, 2019

        Also Mercedes-Benz is opening a factory just outside Moscow later this year.

    12. Iain Gill
      February 5, 2019

      Nope Japanese car production was moved here simply because of the real and threatened import quotas on cars from Japan into the EU. That plus significant state aid, obvious and hidden, given to the makers.

      If the EU really stopped import quotas on cars from Japan then the German and French car industries will be decimated, as they simply can not compete with the Japanese produced cars in a “full on” free market. I doubt the Germans or French will let it happen.

      This announcement from Nissan shows what a complicated mess we have. We have stopped the free market, manipulated in heavily with state manipulation both at the UK and EU level, and now the car makers need to keep the politicians pointing in the best direction for their needs.

      Plus there is a significant Renault/Nissan cross shareholding, and swap of technologies and parts production. Renault has significant French government shareholders. So the French government can and do pull a lot of influence on both Renault and Nissan, so they cannot be seen as impartial.

      So the remainer waffle about this story is laughable.

    13. Beecee
      February 5, 2019

      Nissan have not moved any production but have decided that a new SUV will not be built anywhere in Europe, but in Japan, until sales of diesel vehicles improve in the EU. The current X Trail is also made in Japan with some assembly sites around the World but none in the EU.

      So nothing to do with the Single Market at all, but to decisions taken by the EU and UK Governments to come down on Diesels with taxes and restrictions.

      The loss to Sunderland is 300+ new jobs with the existing staff still fully employed on the current, non X Trail, vehicle production.

      So Nissan are not moving any production from Sunderland but will not bring a new vehicle as previously promised.

    14. AndyC
      February 5, 2019

      Your first sentence is an assertion unsupported by evidence. As to the rest, you would do well to educate yourself about Thatcher’s opinions re the single market. She was uneasy about it as soon as the ink was dry, and regretted not listening more to colleagues (such as, I imagine, our host) who warned that it was a constitutional trojan horse for EMU. Hence her Bruges speech in 1988 where she attempted to draw a line in the sand in the face of the process that would culminate in Maastricht. In her memoirs (1993) she was ambivalent about its economic merits, and by the time of her last book in 2002, she was thoroughly against both the single market and indeed EU membership. So I guess that makes her a political pygmy too, huh.

    15. A.F.Fanculo
      February 5, 2019

      Nissan said they were moving production because of the UNCERTAINTY due to Brexit. If a certain PM had not been changing her mind, giving away all negotiating points,and running about like a headless chicken a lot of uncertainty would by now have been resolved.

    16. SecretPeople
      February 5, 2019

      You need to read the Nissan spokesperson’s own words. While they admit the current EU/UK impasse is not conducive to business certainty, they explain that the backlash against diesel was unforeseen back in 2016. Note that they are not moving production to the EU.

    17. jerry
      February 5, 2019

      @Bill Grand; Stop trying to make out that everything is Brexit connected, also Nissan has not said it is leaving the UK, the Sunderland.

      The first thing to remember is where the major X-Trail market is, how it sits within the Nissan model line up and how it competes within that line-up along with the Qashqai. Then of course what about future vehicles currently in R&D, and how they fit the corporate planning strategy – remember Nissan was talking about two new models for Sunderland, the X-Trail and a new EV, could they be now planning for two new EVs perhaps – who knows, all, or most, being commercially confidential.

      Then, having touched on corporate issues, there is of course the well publicised problems Nissan face in Japan, along with their previous CEO, who knows how that is going to play out eventually and that of Nissan’s tie up with Renault too.

      Of course Brexit is an issue, but Nissan has not said why. If it is fear of post Brexit tariffs then that is not the UK’s fault, direct your anger towards the Brussels eurocrats, not the democratic wish of the UK electorate, including those in Sunderland [1] who voted by 61% (on a 65% turnout) to Leave, or those who put forward solutions to the supposed problems that the EU and their “political pigmies” keep trying to throw into the works out of pure spite -such as with the NI boarder or gridlock at Dover!

      Nor was Brexit a Conservative only issue, traditionally the core of the Labour party had been far more eurosceptic and since its 2015 revival, still is.

      [1] Sunderland an area that has suffered greatly under the supposedly common, but actually very asymmetrical, rules of the EEC/EU

    18. Newmania
      February 5, 2019

      ..what he said !

      1. Anonymous
        February 5, 2019

        So why aren’t they moving to the EU ?

    19. Martin R
      February 5, 2019

      There has been no brexit so far. Businesses have been damaged by almost three years of time wasting, new taxes, and punitive regulations. The damage done was intentional in order to create the impression that withdrawal from the EU would be hurtful (it won’t). Apparently the policy worked in your case.

    20. A G Whizz
      February 5, 2019


    21. ukretired123
      February 5, 2019

      You give yourself away in your cynicism (if I dare may be as bold to say so sir).
      I always find the ‘Little Englanders’ comments are a manifestation of jealousy and hate because this great country has given so much to the world in so many ways that some find it too difficult to grasp, especially Freedom and Free Speech. That is why many voted Brexit for Freedom from EU bureaucracy.
      Recommend some homework, the Open University is your oyster waiting, again given free like the world wide web from Great Britain.

      1. TRP
        February 5, 2019

        You must never have taken a course with the Open University to say their courses are free. Even their MOOCs (which are very good indeed) are around £35 to £85 depending on the length of the course (3 to 7 weeks) if one wants a proof of “attendance” and a transcript of the notes obtained for the various tests during the courses. The only good thing is that if one fails such tests and does not get the required threshold mark at the end of such a MOOC there is no need to pay.

      2. Steve
        February 5, 2019


        “I always find the ‘Little Englanders’ comments…..”

        That particular comment is always made by cowards from the anonymity of a PC. They don’t have the guts to say it to a patriots face.

        1. ukretired123
          February 8, 2019

          Likewise sir.

      3. margaret howard
        February 6, 2019


        ” That is why many voted Brexit for Freedom from EU bureaucracy.”

        How do you know that? So why did over 16m vote Remain?

        As for EU bureaucracy – how did they manage to create the world’s most successful trading bloc?

        Our own attempts to compete with EFTA/commonwealth failed miserably by comparison. That’s why we begged to join the EU all those years ago.

        Brexit is about to destroy all of that – back to the ‘sick man of Europe’!

        1. libertarian
          February 6, 2019

          margaret howard

          The EU is now the “sick man of Europe”. Once we’ve left watch other countries beg to leave. 17.4 million of us want to live in the future

          16 million luddites , full of fear and resisting change and the modern world still wished to be nannied by unelected bureaucrats . They’ll learn

        2. Steve
          February 6, 2019

          margaret howard

          “So why did over 16m vote Remain?”

          What’s that got to do with it ? They lost, are the minority therefore irrelevant.

          “…..we begged to join the EU all those years ago.”

          Wrong. You speak for yourself Ms Howard, I don’t beg under any circumstances and I don’t know any Englishman who does.

    22. Jasg
      February 5, 2019

      If they were moving production to Europe rather than Japan that argument might hold some water. As it stands it is just another demonstration of brexit derangement syndrome.

    23. Dennisa
      February 5, 2019

      They are moving production of one model back to Japan, away from the nonsense EU anti-diesel regulations and the punitive UK taxes on diesel ownership. Brexit was an afterthought.

    24. N Murphy
      February 5, 2019

      I disagree. Nissan has probably determined that the smaller predicted sales of its new Chelsea tractor can be serviced by a single production line – and that the new EU-Japan FTA means that that can be in Japan rather than in the EU. The flip side is that the UK can now expect to sell more Rollers, Bentleys and Jaguars to Japan. That’s how trade and investment works.

    25. NickC
      February 5, 2019

      Bill Grand, The EU’s single market was not the creation of Margaret Thatcher, brilliant or otherwise. Please read her Bruges speech. She wanted a free trade area using mutual recognition of standards and regulations, not the centralised, dirigiste model favoured, and implemented, by your EU bureaucrats.

    26. Anonymous
      February 5, 2019

      Until Mrs Thatcher realised the political entanglement to come and changed her mind. It was then that she was ousted by the Heseltinians and Maastricht soon followed.

      PS, It has been said that you need a British 4×4 to get you into a desert and a Japanese one to get you out of it – we can now discount a Nissan as its most vital component is now French.

    27. libertarian
      February 6, 2019

      Bill Grand

      I bet Ive got far more knowledge of how trade and investments work that you.

      You dont even see to know that the EU has killed the diesel market

  6. Dominic
    February 5, 2019

    I believe the EU and the UK are acting in unison on many policy matters. By doing so they can affect market behaviour and engineer a politically desirable outcome. Damaging the interests of commerce and the consumer is quite simply not a consideration for the EU-UK bipartite. The loss of economy, investment and jobs is a favourable outcome as it turns the local population against Brexit if they conclude that Brexit is responsible for such a loss

    Nothing happens in politics if the ruling UK-EU cabal doesn’t want it to happen. Nothing is left to chance. If something does happen it happens for a reason, is deliberate and is planned

    The attack on diesel is deliberate, malicious and politically motivated.

    We have a government infected by people whose intentions are destructive, malevolent and manipulative. May and Hammond and the pro-EU construct (Europhile MPs, the administrative class and other interested parties like the BBC and the CBI) are still determined to engineer an outcome that prevents our leaving.

    I am looking forward to a time when our party and our country is lead by a leader that is pro-UK sovereignty and will fight for our nation’s independence. May is not that person. Never was, never will be.

    Theresa. Close the door on the way out and take Philip with you. And Ollie. And Dominic.

  7. Richard1
    February 5, 2019

    We are often asked for EU regulations and policies which are objectionable – although of course the UK is often complicit in these – and can there be a better example than the promotion of diesel? c 50% of vehicles in the EU/UK are now diesel vs 5% in the US. Tens of thousands of premature deaths are estimated to have occurred as a result. Let’s recall the righteous finger wagging from politicians and the climate change establishment urging us to buy diesel. I succumbed myself & we have had diesel vehicles for 15 years, initially congratulating ourselves on a little gesture greenery.

    The wider issue is how does such bad policy happen? I think it’s because at the EU level there is not the same process of robust debate and parliamentary scrutiny as we have at the national level. Policy is promoted by the commission, decided by ministers among policy trade offs (all in secret, so no public debate), and then just imposed on member states. It is then very difficult to change – so we’ve had this terrible policy for years longer than we should have had. Any criticism results in dismissive denunciation.

    Light bulbs is another – much less serious – example. Billions wasted unnecessarily when all the while the market was enabling LED, a much better solution than the EU mandated global warming bulbs we suffered for a few years.

    Debate and democracy produces better policy.

  8. APL
    February 5, 2019

    JR: “More recently the EU has discovered that its emissions tests were not stringent enough ..”

    No, they were stringent enough, it’s just that manufacturers were hand in glove with the EU, the EU looked the other way while manufacturers falsifying the emissions metrics of their vehicles.

    1. jerry
      February 5, 2019

      @APL; “it’s just that manufacturers were hand in glove with the EU

      Oh dear, someone has forgotten that the ‘scandal’ emerged in the USA…

      The manufactures simply looked at the required test rules and found loopholes, no falsifying needed at all, the vehicles simply carried out the test as required – had you driven your diesel car, of the makes concerned, as the vehicles were required to run on a rolling-road under test conditions you would have got much the same results – same sort of thing happens with MPG figures, idealistic testing results in idealistic results.

      The reaction of govts around the world was a simple case of smarting, having been slapped in the face by their own ineptitude!

  9. David in Kent
    February 5, 2019

    Commentators, particularly on the left, criticise the Conservative party for being in the pocket of big business. Mr Hammond in a cosy conference call about ‘no deal’ Brexit, doesn’t help. But then Government Ministers surprise important UK employers like JLR with a drastic change in policy on diesels. The least they could have done was to have given some advance warning that they would be changing direction.

  10. Andy
    February 5, 2019

    Nissan did draw attention to diesel in its decision. It also drew attention to Brexit. As did JLR, Honda and Ford in recent grim plans too.

    Where you are spectacularly wrong on this is on the issue is motivation. The push to diesel was done for the right reasons, even though the outcome – which few foresaw – went wrong.

    We needed to quickly slash emissions from petrol cars, diesel looked to be a solution. I doubt anybody expected the car industry to cheat.

    With hindsight the policy was wrong and it has been changed. But I don’t see any malice in this anywhere from the politicians. A mistake was made and it was fixed. I want politicians who admit when they get it wrong and who change track. Those who bleat on that nothing has changed when everything has changed are exactly what we don’t need.

    This is where today’s grown up politicians differ from the Brexiteer Tories. Your party’s history is littered with inglorious errors – the poll tax, section 28, the bedroom tax, Universal Credit. All divisive policies we knew in advance would be a disaster, all of which were/are a disaster, all of which the Tories knew best on, and yet all of which you were wrong about.

    Just like Brexit. None of you will be able to claim you all acted in good faith when it goes inevitably wrong.

  11. Lifelogic
    February 5, 2019

    Indeed, once again it is misguided government taxation, direction and government regulations that are the main problem. We see this with the UK’s moronic energy policy, the dire NHS, the idiotically complex tax and employment laws the large number of students getting into £50k of debt for largely worthless degrees too ……

    Diesel actually contains about 15% more carbon dioxide per litre but a modern diesel might typically do 25% more MPG so not that much difference. Not that manmade CO2 is the catastrophic problem that governments pretend it is. But air quality in cities is clearly important so why on earth have the government and the green loons encouraged wood burning stoves in towns?

    Electric cars still generate loads of CO2 but it is at the power station and in their manufacture and battery production. Probably more on average than petrol or diesel cars do all things considered.

    1. Lifelogic
      February 5, 2019

      15% more Carbon I meant – that comes out as CO2 after combustion.

  12. David J
    February 5, 2019

    Well said John
    Facts get in the way of the other emotional debate that is diesel.
    Despite the cheating by VW, Diesel engines are the cleanest mode of transport taking into account the full cycle “end to end” of energy production and use. CO2 is the number issue our planet faces (even more serious than Brexit!). I like many others have abandoned diesel purely on financial grounds going from 45 mpg diesel to a 20 mpg petrol hybrid. In one fell swoop I have doubled the CO2 output! In reality the situation is worse than this . When I use the electricity to power the car (let’s ignore the lithium battery that will be expensive and dirty to dispose of later…) then I am in the main relying on a 30 year old has fired power station that per KW is much dirtier than diesel AND for every 100KW produced at the power station, only 30KW reaches the plug socket of the car. The tail is sadly wagging the dog.
    Nissan? They are not pulling out, they are sensibly (according to our reactionary and emotional legislation) deciding not to get deeper in.

  13. Lifelogic
    February 5, 2019

    A good way to reduce emmisions would be to fire Hammond, cut the up to 15% stamp duty on property purchases and allow people to closer to their jobs without being mugged by government for many thousands of pounds just for moving home.

    1. Al
      February 5, 2019

      **A good way to reduce emmisions would be to fire Hammond,**

      There would certainly be a considerable reduction in toxic emissions from No 11. Downing Street.

  14. JoolsB
    February 5, 2019

    The Nissan decision has seen all the usual scare mongers hitting the airwaves to blame Brexit and especially a no deal scenario as the reason. Not seeing many if any Brexiteers disputing this John.

    Nissan’s decision has nothing to do with Brexit except maybe the uncertainty that most businesses are feeling thanks to the delaying tactics being employed by the majority of MPs, most of whom couldn’t run a whelk stall let alone a business, but it has everything to do with this Government and Hammond in particular and yet another one of their disastrous policies.

    Why are you and your Brexit colleagues not shouting this out from the rooftops at every opportunity? I know it’s your party John but Brexit comes before party and the finger firmly needs to be pointed at rudderless disastrous May and this pathetic clueless Government for their part in any destruction of the car industry instead of allowing them to get away with blaming a no deal instead.

  15. Everhopeful
    February 5, 2019

    Surely the greatest increase in pollution must always come from increased numbers of vehicles? Too many cars on the road never mind petrol or diesel. The gridlock we are fast approaching will mean acres of stationery running engines pumping out fumes.
    Actually that will be countered by local councils’ ongoing ban on cars in towns. But then again when everyone shops online many more vans will be needed to deliver goods. ( Did I read that 70% of increased traffic is down to Amazon et al?).
    So no one will even need cars. Demonise the motorists…sell no cars!
    The habit of engine running helps a lot of course!! Neighbours and random stoppers just love to sit and run their engines as do the motor bikers …but they use the pavement. Van drivers need to keep them running when writing up their job notes along the roadside. ( No office premises..more dosh for directors!).
    A Post Office van,bonnet up engine pumping outside my garden…black smoke akimbo. When asked, the driver said that this happened regularly…there would be a warning then the engine would cut out and then this sort of “ burning off” process would have to be carried out. And this was not a fault but a feature of the Diesel engine!
    Great. What a mess!

  16. Caterpillar
    February 5, 2019

    The diesel debacle is indeed serious, the Brexiteers negotiation debacle is serious but the UK’s medium to long term issue is productivity – lack of investment (private and public) – lack of automation.

    Labour has become too cheap (oversupplied).
    Inward investment from international productive companies is not attracted (apprehensive).
    Low interest rates have led to low risk outlook.
    Spillovers are not happening.
    Recent years, rather than previous,single market has led to some protection not competition (broad free trade may help).

    Nonetheless acting on the obvious above might not be enough. Automation and productivity need to be a central focus, if UK doesn’t get productivity up, or shift to productive industries then it will struggle.

    1. Caterpillar
      February 5, 2019

      Brexit not Brexiteers – autocorrect problem.

  17. Alan Jutson
    February 5, 2019

    In past years many Politicians were dumb to the law of unintended consequences when introducing some policies.

    Now many are simply dumb, and do not understand simplicity or human nature.

    Until an electric car, or any other type of powered car, can be filled up or topped up within 5 mins from empty to full, it will never catch on for the majority.

  18. A.Sedgwick
    February 5, 2019

    As previously written the modern diesel engines with their filters, flaps, sensors etc need high mileage to burn off the particulates that are trapped in the exhaust system. My now sold diesel car became unusable for local trips as it kangoored along. It needed frequent longer journeys to burn off the particulates. Making journeys just to burn off the particulates defeats the objects of economy and air quality. Old diesel engines churned out the particulates through the exhaust pipe.

    This information I learned the costly way and the motor engineers told me this was always predictable on low mileage recent diesels. The moral is diesel cars have a limited market, are strictly for high mileage and best suited for leasing.

    1. A.Sedgwick
      February 5, 2019


  19. Iain Gill
    February 5, 2019

    There is some basic science that the politicians seem to miss.
    For any given barrel of oil being refined it is going to produce the same % of diesel and the same % of petrol no matter what the politicians say or do. That diesel % from the refinery will not disappear by magic.
    So, given that large volumes of diesel are going to be produced, unless we give up using oil altogether, which is not likely any time soon, then the question becomes what’s the best way of using it.
    Now as it happens modern car diesel engines are a pretty environmentally friendly way of burning that diesel, and if that’s not where it goes then its going to go into boat engines, industrial engines, train engines, and get exported to countries with far less stringent anti-pollution measures than us.
    So, a big push on reducing diesel cars here is likely to just end up with all that diesel being exported to third world countries where it will be used in far less environmentally friendly ways.
    So not a net improvement of world pollution, all its done is pushed costs up here and made it even cheaper to operate abroad, further eroding our competitive position.

  20. Alan Joyce
    February 5, 2019

    Dear Mr. Redwood,

    The diesel car volte-face is yet more evidence of the amateurish incompetence of our political class (with notable exceptions) who have what is known as the reverse-midas touch.

    It appears that Theresa May has sent the AAWG on a wild goose chase with nobody less than the ceremonial Brexit Secretary himself Mr. Stephen Barclay. Meanwhile, with a nod and a wink from Theresa, Olly Robbins gets on with the real job of selling the UK down the river.

    When are Conservative Brexit MP’s going to learn? Secretive, cowardly and inarticulate, she is completely untrustworthy.

  21. Shieldsman
    February 5, 2019

    POLITICAL CORRECTNESS which drives politicians often leads to more problems than it fixes. The internal combustion engine is much improved in efficiency with reduced emissions. The ever increasing number of diesel vehicles on the road in Towns and Cities, is driving Ministers who do not have the technical knowledge, crazy to find a solution.
    The EV is in its infancy. Building the car is no problem. Drivable distance per charge and the re-charging infrastructure are major hurdles.
    There will be competing demand for new electricity generation between EV’s and the Climate change Act.

  22. stred
    February 5, 2019

    The anti-diesel lobby has been a well organised campaign started around three years ago and has now achieved its aim of crippling the car industry while they are made to move to electric car production. It is well known that there is little infrastructure in place to charge electric vehicles, that it will be very difficult to charge them where the owner lives in a flat or terraced house without off road parking, charging times are long and range short and the generation is lacking, with only a lack of base generation in prospect. Why then has there been a campaign against diesel cars just when they have become very efficient and cleaner?

    The UN agenda has been published and requires that governments move to expand cities to house increased population and that public transport is used. Private car ownership is not liked by the elite, except of course for themselves. Then there is the green agenda. The huge increase in wind generation is a problem unless a way to store energy can be found. Batteries are very expensive and it was noted in Sustainable Energy Without the Hot Air that there is a match between the number of car batteries and wind electricity. The thinking in DECC, now moved to Mr Clarke’s department, is that we will all have electric cars and not use them while the wind is blowing at night. This may seem impractical to anyone with common sense but that is what civil servants, who are not engineers, think. They also know that, with the likely mix of gas and wind generation, an efficient diesel car produces around the same amount of CO2 as an electric car, but costs much less and can travel much further, while using waste heat to heat the interior. They have to nobble diesel another way.

    The story about 40,000 people dropping dead every year because of diesel fumes is known to be false. They have taken a guesstimate of reduced lifespan for people living in a polluted area for 80 years and although this may be a short period, when it is multiplied by the number of the whole population the number becomes large. Now we also are being told that all the little children are likely to die from asthma too, with zealot doctors making a name for themselves by parading the poor little souls through London. This is also false. There may be some cases where children have died from asthma but there is no overall increase and the causes of asthma are disputed. It is also known that pollution levels of NO2, SO2 and particulates have greatly reduced over the past 30 years and that the parents and grandparents of young people breathed much dirtier air. They also know that if all diesel cars were taken off the road, then the increase in lifespan would be about a week. This is why some German doctors have challenged the policy there and why a British respiratory consultant tried to explain about ‘zombie’ statistics a couple of years ago, and was ignored. The expert at CleanairLondon, who is a green thinking retired banker can tell us that 40,000 people actually die every year and be believed. (Re RT video Youtube.)

    1. stred
      February 5, 2019

      A British respiritory consultant has argued that the ban on diesels will make little difference, beating the German doctors by over a year.

      1. stred
        February 5, 2019

        Car workers facing redundancy, van drivers facing charges inside London’s inner ring road and cab drivers facing losing 25% of their earnings because of Khan’s claims about pollution may like to read this analysis of his and the BBC’s claimed health risks.

  23. Jon Davies
    February 5, 2019

    Whilst I agree with most of your overview, the motives are misrepresented of those running “competition to see which town or city can be more severe on diesel vehicles by imposing bans or extra taxes“.

    The driver to this discouragement of diesel is to improve air quality standards, which the UK government has failed to meet for a decade in key urban locations. Whilst air quality has improved generally and NOx emissions from industry have declined, localised emissions from vehicles near busy roads produces a toxic soup which is not fit to breath. Even more concerning, the exhaust pipe on vehicles is low down, conveniently placed to disproportionately damage the developing lungs of small children and those in prams. Diesel vehicles are the primary cause of these problems, localised to busy road networks (further reduction in pollutants from central heating boilers would be welcome but would reduce the background level rather than have a huge impact at street level).

    You may consider pollution zone responses from councils to be unreasonable but they (and your government) are breaking air pollution laws today. If other forms of crime were going on that caused long term injury to citizens, would it be reasonable to ignore it for years whilst it was sorted out? What is your immediate solution for this crime?

    1. Stred
      February 7, 2019

      The very small estimate of extension to lifespan comes from the document that the mayor is using and is produced by the green lobby. Exhaust pipes were always low and older vehicles were far more polluting in the same roads. Perhaps the cycle lanes have caused more concentration just where cyclists are breathing deeply..The measured levels of NO2 are shown to have been level recently on graphs in the document, taken from roadside monitors The original document refers to NO2 as a mild irritant.

      The reason that present levels are illegal is that the legal level has been lowered twice. The level is far lower than the usual pollution levels found in Chin, India, Mexico and Nigeria, which often reach over 1000 compared to London, which is usually about 30 and peaks around 100 when we have rare weather conditions. The background NO2 is about half the total and much of it comes in from outside Central London. The mayor is also planning to ban gas boilers! It’s all bollocks.

      1. stred
        February 8, 2019

        Disgusting to find that Client Earth, the ‘charity’ that has done more than any other green organisation to help Khan ban diesels and reduce our car industry to making huge losses, has been funded by DFID. Their boss has given himself a big pay rise to £230,000.

  24. Bob
    February 5, 2019

    CO2 is a trace gas which constitutes less than 0.04% of the Earths atmosphere. It’s essential for plant life.
    The BBC are refusing a platform to anyone who questions AGW theory because they know that it doesn’t stand up to scrutiny.

    1. NickC
      February 5, 2019

      Bob, Few doubt that there may be some AGW. The big issue is how much; and especially whether there will be CAGW – Catastrophic Anthropogenic Climate Change. As predictions of extreme climate change have repeatedly failed over the last quarter century, that looks unlikely. Frankly CAGW is a dead horse that only some politicians, a few Remain fanatics, and the BBC are still flogging.

    2. Lifelogic
      February 6, 2019

      True the BBC is hugely biased on this issue. But I think the daft (mainly arts graduates they employ) actually believe in this exaggerated religion. Some of their reporters are so ignorant & lacking in any scientific understanding that they do not even understand what positive feedback in the engineering/science sense actually is and think it is a positive thing like a positive comment!

      The BBC employ a hapless Cambridge English graduate as their alarmist in chief.

    3. hefner
      February 6, 2019

      Indeed CO2 has only a concentration of 0.04% whereas N2 and O2 are respectively 78 and 21%. Water vapour (H2O) is highly variable and on average has a concentration about 1%. N2 and O2, being 2-atom molecules (linear) do not have any greenhouse effect (no absorption lines in the infrared part of the electromagnetic spectrum (4 to 100 micrometers).
      Among the molecules with a potential greenhouse effect (3- or more atom molecules), the relative importance of CO2 is much higher than 0.04%. Maybe you could clue yourself and read Wikipedia on the topics. One cannot get a “feeling” of the potential greenhouse effect of a molecule based on its concentration.

      1. Stred
        February 6, 2019

        Some scientists believe that CO2 absorbs the Sun’s radiation at a narrow frequency and that, when it has all been absorbed, increased concentration does not lead to proportionate warming. Thus is why the climate models were wrong and warming has been much less than forecast.

        1. hefner
          February 6, 2019

          Solar radiation comes to Earth in the 0.2 to 4 micron wavelength range in which there are just a limited number of absorption bands in the so-called linear regime, i.e., increase in concentration relates to increase in heating. There is an absorption band around 4.3 micron where little solar radiation is available and not much longwave/infrared is emitted, so is not really important. The more important infrared absorption bands are two small ones at 9.4 and 10.4 microns (in a linear regime) and the big one between 13 and 17 micron (in a square-root regime). [ The “greenhouse” effect is what is happening in the longer part of the electromagnetic spectrum (between 4 and 100microns).] This last one is indeed saturated at its centre (around 15 microns, and does not contribute much) but on its sides (not saturated) still contributes to heating, specially in the shorter range, as in the longer wavelength range (>16 microns) the effect of absorption by water vapour is superimposed and decreases relatively the effect of CO2.
          The study of CO2 started with Tindall and the characteristics of its absorption (its spectroscopy) is well known since the 1950s. Databases of line characteristics (some thousands of them) are available since the 70s.
          There are plenty of phenomena that might not be particularly well represented in climate models (role and dynamics of oceans, vegetation, ice sheets, exact effects of aerosols in “clear”skies and their interactions with cloud water droplets and cloud ice particles) but the representation of the gaseous absorption by H2O, CO2, O3, CH4, N2O and most of the CFCs, HFCs is rather a settled problem.

          1. Stred
            February 7, 2019

            Thanks. So is the saturation in the large frequency band why they revised the models recently in order to match empirical evidence?

          2. hefner
            February 7, 2019

            The latest version of such spectroscopic databases is the HITRAN2016. The abstract of the paper describing it is available to anybody on the web. Most of the updates are related either to an easier way to handle such a huge dataset (some hundreds of thousands of lines) or to the addition of new molecules likely to be present in extra-terrestrial planets/stars.
            The data for the most current Earth’s atmosphere gases have not been touched for any practical purposes. Only some data for H2O in the range 20 to 30 microns have been (slightly) modified following spectrometer measurements on the so-called North Slope of Alaska (near Barrow) as this part of the spectrum usually saturated (behaving like a blackbody) at low and mid-latitudes has been showing much finer structures in these very cold and dry conditions. These line parameters derived from these spectrometer measurements replace similar parameters derived from the likely electron transitions for given molecules provided by quantum mechanics theory.

      2. Bob
        February 6, 2019

        Do you have a clue as to why rises in CO2 follow warm periods rather than precede them?

        1. hefner
          February 6, 2019

          Are you so sure this is true? Have you considered the state of the Earth’s surface when such a phenomenon started? What is the time scale when going from a glaciated Earth to a ice-free one, what is the time scale of these rises in CO2 and temperature? What is the role of the change in the surface albedo? What is the role of the growth of vegetation during these periods?
          Answer properly these questions and I might agree with you.

          1. Stred
            February 7, 2019

            The evidence is from the Vostok ice core graphs. The periods are small and scientists are now arguing that the way that the snow was compacted to ice accounts for the time shift. They had to come up with something.

          2. hefner
            February 7, 2019

            I would not dare explaining these things as I had never dealt with ice cores 😉 but there are various tentative explanations, one of them ‘CO2 lags temperature: What does it mean?” on

          3. stred
            February 8, 2019

            There is a long discourse on including explanations and article from a leading scientist who is the author on the main British book on the subject. The explanation of compacted snow is very difficult to follow.

            It was very sad to read that the main contributor, Roger Andrews , died this week. Along with Prof MacKay we have lost two of the most rational qualified experts. Roger’s dismembering of the green energy agenda is still available fortunately.

          4. hefner
            February 8, 2019

            Stred, thanks a lot for introducing me to Euan Mearns’ blog. It sounds interesting.
            A very good one for me is the (Climate Etc) from an actual US atmospheric/climate scientist, not a geologist involved in oil and gas. She is quite skeptical of climate modeling and of the IPCC, has testified several times to various US Congress working groups, even contributed to the Global Warming Policy Forum but in a way showing she clearly understands the dynamics/physics of the system … and not in the way usually found among deniers who either cannot hide their direct financial interests in preventing any sensible discussion on the topics or are too lazy/(stupid?) to (try to) study the pluses and minuses of what is presently going on with the weather and climate and/or just rely on their favorite newspaper for “information” (I include the Guardian here).

  25. Ronald Olden
    February 5, 2019

    John Redwood might just as well complain that our drugs, smoking, drinking, and the coal and wood burning laws in cities, are disincentives to drug cartels, tobacco manufacturers, and distilleries, pits and forestry. Or that our gun and knife laws are disincentives to gun manufacturers and knife makers.

    The United Kingdom is NEVER going to put public health at risk in order to attract car manufacturers.

    In any case the problem with diesel cars is much worse than CO2. The previous normal diesel car emitted on average around 45% more nitrous oxide than a petrol car.

    Exposure to nitric oxide significantly increases the risk of respiratory problems and the fine particulate matter that diesel engines produce causes cancer, and can have acute respiratory effects.

    Increases in background concentrations of particulate matter result in more hospital admissions and deaths from heart attacks, particularly amongst those already at risk.

    Diesel engine manufacturers now put in particulate filters. But they clog up. The latest emissions technology requires the owner to regularly add a urea mixture to the engine.
    But that’s not to say we do it.

    By contrast, petrol emissions systems regulate themselves, needing less driver input.

    It seems likely that to tackle both problems, governments will eventually have to start banning vehicles with internal combustion engines altogether, initially in urban areas and ultimately more generally.

    As for Nissan, Gianluca de Ficchy, said the decision in Sunderland was partly affected by the fact that the UK doesn’t have a deal with the EU. But we don’t need him to tell us that. It’s OBVIOUS.

    If Japan has a free trade agreement with the EU, and we don’t, and John Redwood is endlessly campaigning for ‘Tariff Schedules” which will seriously disrupt trade with the continent, and planning on what to spend the money he thinks he’s going to raise, then OBVIOUSLY, Nissan are not going to risk new investment in Sunderland, when they can put it in Japan.

    It’s safer to avoid the UK altogether. And John Redwood had better get used to it, because company after company will do the same if there’s no Withdrawal Agreement.

    Incidentally the Diesel emissions laws are as tough in Japan as they are here, and might get tougher.

    1. Stred
      February 7, 2019

      Why do taxi drivers in London not have an increased risk of lung cancer.? Why do Westminster, Knightsbridge and Chelsea have some of the healthiest citizens but Tower Hamlets the most unhealthy, while all have the same pollution levels? Should poverty be banned as the biggest health riskalong with too much ghee and smoking?

  26. William
    February 5, 2019

    Off-topic, but talk of Theresa May planning a snap general election behind closed doors is particularly concerning. Why Conservative MPs kept her in on the basis that she promised she wouldn’t call an election – a promise I seem to remember her breaking – I do not know. Pressure needs to be applied to her not to call an election. She must be gone by the next one or we risk a Corbyn government and, perhaps even worse, a Corbyn Brexit.

    1. NickC
      February 5, 2019

      William, Theresa May has frittered away her authority. It couldn’t happen to a nicer woman. Her draft Withdrawal Agreement was written by EU bureaucrats and compliant Remain UK civil servants. The majority of MPs are immensely dim – they cannot see what’s coming consequent upon their betrayal of Leave.

    2. Chris
      February 5, 2019

      There seems to be a very simple rule with regard to May’s promises. All are broken. She says whatever is useful to gain advantage at a particular moment, it seems. Totally lacking in honesty and integrity in my mind. She does not deserve to be our PM. We deserve far, far better.

    3. Mark B
      February 5, 2019

      It is even odder since, she stated that she will not lead the party at the next GE.

      1. jerry
        February 6, 2019

        @Mark B; I think you’ll find TM qualified her comment, saying that she will have resigned before the next “scheduled” general election is due.

    4. jerry
      February 5, 2019

      @William; Due to the Party rules, TM loosing a GE is about the only hope of getting rid of her until November 2019, unless she can be persuaded to resign -that is not looking very hopeful.

    5. Stred
      February 7, 2019

      They want to be ready in case the Electoral Commission has to approve the new Conservative Brexit Party.

  27. hardlymatters
    February 5, 2019

    Today’s effort from JR is just more of the old spin we have become used to- he knows full well that Nissan has decided to pull back because of the uncertainty about everything not only in UK but also in Europe. They may very well switch to petrol engines over there for their new models – problem solved for them.. but problem not solved for the people of Sunderland.

    1. NickC
      February 5, 2019

      Hardlymatters, That means if we had voted to Remain we would have remained trapped in continuing EU uncertainty. The coming EU economic crisis, caused by arbitrary and random political decisions, massive non-performing loans, sovereign debt, Target2, and zombie EU banks, will be better weathered from outside the EU. Thank God we voted to leave the EU treaties.

    2. mancunius
      February 5, 2019

      Sunderland – where the manufacture of EVs proceeds without any job losses in the plant.

  28. ChrisS
    February 5, 2019

    The Green lobby is already complaining about the rise in CO2 caused by the switch to petrol from diesel cars. Penalising the latest spec diesel cars is illogical as they are at least as clean as a petrol engine but use a lot less fuel and produce 25% less CO2 !

    Of course what the politicians really want is for us all to buy electric cars but that isn’t going to happen any time soon. They are far too expensive and the range problem is a key factor for many buyers and, according to a senior Jaguar engineer I know, is not something that will be solved any time soon.

    Finally the nail in the coffin of electric cars is charging. It will be impossible to provide a charging infrastructure capable of handling a wholesale switch to pure electric traction.
    There will never be enough charging points and the time taken to recharge will remain so long that it will be impractical for all those that live in flats or houses with no private off road parking to recharge their cars at service stations.

    Finally, no politician has yet come forward with a practical and affordable way of generating the power we will need in the UK to cope with the expansion of existing demands let alone a fleet of electric vehicles.

    The prediction is that a wholesale switch to electric traction would require five additional Hinkley Points and that’s excluding the demand for electric vans or trucks.

    The problems have been caused by politicians and can only be solved by firm direction by the same people. That direction should be towards Hydrogen fuel cell power which has none of the range or charging time issues.

    However, with the exception of a very few MPs like our host, the ignorance of politicians on this subject is lamentable.

    1. anon
      February 9, 2019

      Lets look forward to the future where solutions will be found.

      Passive charging whilst driving.
      Better batteries and ease & speed of charging in all new parking spaces.
      Heat pump technology mandatory in all new builds in dense urban areas.
      Energy storage and demand change tech will cause costs to fall towards the marginal cost of the fuel and infrastructure. Assuming government nutures and then allows competition!

      Coal & fossil fuel are useful only as a transition and as “reserve capacity” until the tech matures.
      EU moves to discourage “held in reserve capacity” clearly slow the move
      to renewables and seem aimed to slow the UK lead in exploiting its rich wind resources and industry tech.

      There is little doubt “renewables” to produce electricity are cheaper than nuclear and are in more and more case cheaper than fossil fuels.

      Fossil fuels should be discouraged in high density areas.

      Hydrogen presently comes from fossil fuels however electricity in the UK is increasingly “renewable”.

  29. BOF
    February 5, 2019

    Out here in the country, diesel makes sense. Both my wife and I have put off changing our cars this year, as have many others but what we do not want are electric cars (glorified milk floats as I think of them).

    It is of course ludicrous as the modern diesel is just as clean as petrol and more fuel efficient.

    As an afterthought, we have holiday let accommodation and we will have to put up signs to ask guests not to charge their cars using our electricity.

    1. Ian wragg
      February 5, 2019

      Get a separate meter fitted and charge them for the pleasure.

  30. ian
    February 5, 2019

    Another 30 per cent of all UK manufacturing will be gone by 2030, all due to the climate change act.

    The Treasury is just high lighting that fact for all car and steel companies with higher taxes.

    The program for the coal fire station to be shut down has been brought forward from 2025 and the old nuclear power station will start shutting down from 2025, the new nuclear power stations have been cancelled due to nobody wants to build them and the one that is being built may never come online.

    When you take into account all the houses needed and electric train lines like HS2 and HS3 along with electric cars and vans you can see that there is no room for manufacturing in this country.
    Even gas power stations are to be phased out starting 2030 under the climate change act.

    Car and car part makes will be first to go along with steel, Mr Dyson is in front of the curve.

  31. agricola
    February 5, 2019

    I personally blame ,”Open mouth before engaging brain politicians and ministers.”

    There should be a constant exchange of knowledge between government and technical research in the vehicle industry. This assumes that among MPs there are a few who could understand what they are looking at. This would do much to eliminate the sudden mood swings in opinion and legislation.

    One great weakness of our EU membership has been our legislator’s eagerness to adapt and gold plate any edict coming from the EU. Whereas some of our EU partners have a pick and mix approach.

    When we eventually leave we will need a largely different quality of MP. Far fewer lawyers schooled in talk and bovine scattology, Many more from a technical and business background. I am not hopeful.

    1. agricola
      February 6, 2019


  32. ukretired123
    February 5, 2019

    Timely Project Fear 3 input from Nissan (and like Mitsubishi) is owned by French Renault in which Macron’s French Govt has an important influential stake. Sounds like Airbus who were asked to say negative things by the EU governments.
    Market forces determine these investment decisions primarily.
    Having had an X-trail myself its successor has struggled in EU sales because of competition and its high price, hence I will not buy one now. Things change and we have to keep up.
    The positive thing about this story is it is now a priority to leave on 29 March as promised because the Uncertainty of 2 to 3 years has to stop. Businesses have to be decisive above all unlike parliament who previously found this alien and seemingly impossible.

  33. Bryan Harris
    February 5, 2019

    So this was yet another screw up by the EU who didn’t do their homework properly in the first place, leaving the UK and other nations to pick up the pieces – Would this type of problem go away, to a degree, if there was something like a second chamber to the EUP – It might help, but somehow I feel the EU would pervert it’s effectiveness.
    It’s great that the UK government encourages more jobs with more cars being built, and no doubt the extra taxes of putting a good number of these new cars on British roads is welcome – BUT WHEN is the government going to realise that they can’t keep putting more cars on our congested streets and motorways, without also providing extra road capacity and adequate parking!

  34. Mark
    February 5, 2019

    On a point of information: SOx is no problem for road transport since sulphur levels in fuels have been reduced progressively to just 10 parts per million. Historically, sulphur dioxide emissions have in any case been dominated by industry and power generation. Since 1990, SO2 emissions have declined by 95%. The one remaining area of high sulphur fuels is ship bunkers, but that is being tackled by the IMO 2020 regulations that will reduce the maximum from 3.5% to 0.5% and add substantially to diesel fuel demand, increasing diesel prices and the cost of shipping in the process, as heavy fuel oil would not meet the standard, and so will have to be turned into diesel using costly processes. It is estimated that the extra demand for marine fuel will add 3 million barrels a day to diesel requirements – perhaps a reason to encourage some switching away from diesel in road transport.

    The UK pollution history on sulphur dioxide is here:

    1. Mark
      February 5, 2019

      I have noticed that diesel prices seem to have moved to a larger premium to petrol in recent months eroding the fuel economy advantage of diesel, despite the UK still charging the same duty per litre on both (in most of Europe petrol attracts a much higher duty than diesel). Perhaps we are already seeing the effect of IMO 2020, since ships have to convert their engines to use the new fuel, and it can’t all be done at once. The effect of these marine regulations on the diesel market means that additional taxation on diesel may be redundant.

  35. ian
    February 5, 2019

    The Treasury is giving carmakers fair warning to start moving out of the UK over the next 10 years, electric prices could double in the next 11 years to stop it being used and when you think that they want all transport to be electric by 2040, there really is no need to build more roads or train lines because transport will be unaffordable for the average person.

    All due to the climate change act, I do not where Brexit fits in all of this but you can forget exports.

  36. Bosnich
    February 5, 2019

    Yet here in Australia the sales of diesel cars and rather large SUVs and double cab utes continue wi thought any mention of the pollution angle but then again the E U is conspicuously absent.

    1. Anonymous
      February 5, 2019

      Britain (and the EU to lesser extent) is insane, Bosnich.

      Brexit was a mere rejection of that insanity. Use Britain as a model of how NOT to run your country.

  37. Dennisa
    February 5, 2019

    There has never been any empirical scientific evidence for the claims re NoX and PM2.5, there are claims and targets based on speculation and computer models. The whole thing is part of the false AGW meme and is one means by which they hope to get rid of cars fuelled by oil.

    “BERLIN — Germany’s diesel civil war has turned into a fake news fight.

    The driver is a claim by 107 German lung specialists that fears about the health impact of vehicle exhaust pollution are overblown. Dieter Köhler, the doctor who led the initiative, told German television network ARD that current EU air quality limits make no sense and should be reformed.”

  38. formula57
    February 5, 2019

    “Nissan drew attention to these issues in its recent decision ….” – indeed it did and now a proper understanding can be formed of its decision about (mainly diesel,poor seller in Europe) X-Trail production being undertaken in Japan and not Sunderland.

    But spare a thought for how diminished they must be, the small-minded, cheerless, warped, twisted Remoaner souls who jumped with such eagerness and glee on the Nissan Sunderland announcement to trumpet their false claims to do our country down. Again, one would have to have a heart of stone not to laugh.

    1. Lorgo
      February 6, 2019

      So project fear us now confurmed as project reality. Brexit means economic disaster

  39. Martin R
    February 5, 2019

    Private industry has worked over the years to make vehicle engines, both petrol and diesel incredibly clean, so the recent extremely damaging hysteria leftist governments have drummed up over diesel emissions is as usual wrong headed and as usual very costly and harmful to industry and to its customers. Particulate matter (PM) pollution from diesels used to be another favourite subject of hysteria by politicians but that has all gone rather quiet recently. Could it be because research has shown that most PM pollution comes from tyres and brakes and not from exhausts, and is hence directly proportional to vehicle mass? But electric vehicles, which are the latest politicians’ fad to be forced on us at huge cost are on average 24% heavier than conventional vehicles. Consequently they produce more particulate pollution than normal cars in that proportion. Yet according to this government they must be forced on us regardless of the staggering cost and regardless of their inferiority in range, price, convenience, etc. That’s without even considering the pollution caused by disposing of the batteries when they are spent in years to come.

    There is the simple fact that diesels still are more efficient than petrols, using about 25% less fuel. My own automatic diesel estate does at least 60 mpg at motorway speeds and it’s no slouch either. Consequently switching the diesel vehicle fleet over to petrol will require an increase in fuel imports of 33% for those vehicles. That is an awful lot more imported fuel. Has anyone thought this through? Silly question, of course not, we’re talking governments in action.

    Even more laughable is the fact that this government is prepared to pay industry (with our money) very many times the electricity strike price to install and run thousands of diesel generators under the STOR scheme (Short Term Operating Reserve) because wind and solar are intermittent and therefore absolutely useless for meeting the nation’s energy needs. The business opportunity of the age – and completely mad. Yet we are told at the very same time that diesel must be phased out at all costs. Are the lunatics running the asylum, or are they?

  40. acorn
    February 5, 2019

    Fewer diesels would mean less importing of diesel fuel. The UK has to import half the 30 billion litres consumed by road transport, over half of which is consumed by commercial vehicles. It’s about the same level of import for aviation jet fuels. But, we do make lots of petrol.

    Alas, after decades of clueless laissez-faire UK governments, we have ended up with old refineries that were designed to produce petrol for transport and heavy fuel oils for electricity generation. I think we are still the largest importer of transport fuels in the OECD.

    1. NickC
      February 5, 2019

      “After decades of clueless laissez-faire UK governments …”. Eerrrmmmm, hardly, since it was government that first pushed diesel and is now hitting it. Nothing “lassez-faire” about that.

  41. ferdinand
    February 5, 2019

    You are right about E6 diesels being cleaner than afore but diesels are always more expensive to service and deteriorate till their next service. The fuel is also very nasty to handle. The only real advantage of diesel over petrol has been fuel consumption but this is more than offset by higher fuel price and costlier servicing. So even now the diesel is a bad buy unless you are a very high mileage user.

    1. Mark B
      February 5, 2019

      In the 70’s and 80’s diesel was by far the cheapest fuel. Fewer cars used diesel and it was the biggest kept secret in motoring. Then diesels got popular and the government started to lose revenue so the price went up and up.

  42. formula57
    February 5, 2019

    Although “The UK Treasury …. attempts to get more people to buy an electric car” and Mr. Gove (suspected quisling) tells us only electric will be sold from 2040, I see from BP oil company that it expects by then only some 12 million UK vehicles will be electric, less than a third of the vehicle parc although I do not have a figure for total numbers. (There are now some 37.5 million vehicles, c.135,000 are electric.)

    Accordingly, the current government and other propaganda that gave me at least the impression internal combustion engines were soon to give way universally to electric on British roads would not seem to be sound.

    1. Fedupsoutherner
      February 5, 2019

      Formula57. Electric only cars in 2040? Good, I’ll be dead before then so I’m not worried.

  43. They Work for Us?
    February 5, 2019

    This brings home the point that important decisions that will affect how we live and what we do are too important to be taken by Govt. alone or by officials with a green gleam in their eyes. No one has voted explicitly for decarbonisation and the consequences of it have not been explained and proper public approval sought by referendum. We need to repeal the Climate Change Act and apply practical common sense to energy production and fuels.
    Govts cannot be trusted to do the sensible thing in the light of big business interests and pressure groups.

    1. Chris
      February 5, 2019

      We are in the hands of the global political cabal at the moment, and Climate Change Act and green everything (based on flawed science) is their agenda. Thank goodness President Trump and some other countries are standing up to them.

      We have in the past always seemed to follow the US, albeit a few years later, but I have hope that the global warming brigade and their dubious and highly suspect agenda (in my mind) generating great wealth for certain individuals will be cast aside and replaced by policies based on sound principles and not driven by political agendas.

  44. Adam
    February 5, 2019

    A Govt that pulls in one direction & then against is exhibits symptoms of being fickle or idiotic.
    Those who blame solely Brexit for car makers’ uncertainty are similarly likely to be daft. The prospect of the UK leaving the EU was evident as soon a the voting date for the Referendum was announced, if not sooner. Everyone has had all that time to prepare. Many tend only to have prepared complaints instead of creating readiness to cope with whatever they might expect. Their complaints should be directed to their own ineptitude.

    1. Sir Joe Soap
      February 5, 2019

      Like one that turns the word replace to amend within a week?
      We know she’s lying even as it’s said.

  45. Christopher Houston
    February 5, 2019

    Just as soon as the Labour Party yoke is lifted from the hearts of my..people of my locality, which intellectually imprisons them with fake wordage in the broadest sense, then I feel their educational advancement across the board will be facilitated to heights undreamed. I know, for sure they have it in them ,
    but deeper than deep. I shall try my bit to read them back into our Country which long ago they …lost.
    My arrogance is necessary so to do. Though it comes from experience

  46. Ian
    February 5, 2019

    Well nothing it seems is going to change while we hang on to this , the worst Government in living memory?

    How is that we can not get rid of Her, and the rest?
    Yes I hope we can have an election before more damage is done.
    To my horror while reading The Daily Express on line today.

    Jacob Ress Mogg, is now saying he will back the current deal in as far as we will talk more, and it will help a smooth change over, because we will also still be giving them more money,
    or words to that effect.
    Frankly I am totally amassed, that Jacob should come out with such a statement, of all people ?

    His idea is to try to make a smooth change, which he says some businesses are worried about it all going wrong, and trade will suffer etc.

    There you have it, by him saying that the EU now know that they just keep saying No and we will never ever get out, how can you talk like this .

    Why could we not have had the Super Canada deal?

    Why the hell do we need a Deal anyway, we voted just for Leave, this is the Establishment wanting what it wants, I am sorry, but as our host said , last week, they have chosen to go to war with the people of this country who voted to Leave.

    Well it will not happen, that is patently clear, because we were lied to from the start.

    They want to stay in, there can not now be anyone who thinks anything else, can there ?

    The Leavers are in the minority in Parliament by a big margin.

    The only way out of this mess, is to have an election, if we are Ever aloud one again, why would they ever give us one, think about it ?

    They , The Establishment , they know best don’t they.

    They also know that a landslide victory would go to Leave means Leave.

    Bring it on or we will be selves for ever more.
    The dream of opening up trade with the other 93% of the other countries on the Planet is just moonshine !

    We are in an Open Prison, being told to do only what the Establishment wants

  47. Den
    February 5, 2019

    Not only is the law an ass, our Government has made it so.
    What does that save for the British government?
    When are we, the ordinary folk, going to get Capable and Streetwise persons to govern us instead of these professional politicians who know very little about the real life we people have to endure?

  48. N Murphy
    February 5, 2019

    Perhaps we should ensure that we have a Single Market within the UK, with mayors losing their ability to target vehicles that the state deems perfectly legal.
    P.S. I love my new diesel-engined, Euro 6-compliant Jaguar XE.

    1. Stred
      February 5, 2019

      I bought an E6 car made in 2015 and now they say it can’t be driven into London as it is not made in 2016. Even hybrids are not allowed.

    2. Fedupsoutherner
      February 5, 2019

      N Murphy. And I love my Range Rover Velar. Why we have to pay extra tax because of the purchase price is beyond me. We don’t produce any more emissions than others. Its not about green issues. Its an envy tax. A chance to tax you for wanting something nice in life. How bloody dare you.

  49. georgeP
    February 5, 2019

    Mrs May said today in Belfast that the NI people would not have to rely on the Irish republic or the EU to guarantee there would be no hard border, she said that the UK government would guarantee that..i will guarantee it.. she said..looks to me the woman is clutching at straws- how can she or her government or any future UK government guarantee anything.. she might not even be there next week.. so all the more reason to have a legally binding backstop in the WA to keep Ireland border open..imagine she’s spending two days over here at this critical juncture.. the mìnd boggles..we just can’t rely anymore on anything this present UK government says

  50. ian
    February 5, 2019

    If you live in a city in the UK after 2025 you need a car that does less than the official CO2 of 76 g/km or you will have to pay to drive in a city, the centre of London starts in April 2019 and whole London by Oct 2025 and other cities in the UK will follow suit over time.

    Any car you buy now and you live in a city or drive into cities a lot, that car will have a limited life of 5 to 6 years before the value of the car collapses in price.

  51. Melvin Cornwell
    February 5, 2019

    The new X Trail is mostly 1.6 petrol, but even the diesel version is weedy. The vehicle does not serve purpose in the West, where 4×4 purchase is primarily about towing and load carrying, and the serious car mags have it marked as low as 2 stars out of 5. Nissan have now realised it is not going to succeed in our marketplace, and the decision to retreat is based on these facts more than anything else. Those who feel the UK has ‘lost out’ are looking at this from the wrong end, I suggest. The North East has, in this instance, dodged a bullet.

  52. Den
    February 5, 2019

    It seems everything the EU “touches” changes from gold into lead. Another heavy weight but with little value.
    A statistic worth note is that total EU exports represent around 44% of their total GDP whereas UK exports represent just 13% of our GDP.
    Furthermore, our exports to the EU are around 44% of our total exports so the EU represents a meagre 5.8% of OUR Total GDP. Hmm.
    Yet Mrs May and her pathetic ” R Team” act as though we the little people. Why is this?

  53. BR
    February 5, 2019

    Exactly. if the standard has been set such that diesels are no longer any more dangerous than other types of car then taxing them is nothing more than wilful money-making scam by government.

    Presumably we can do nothing about this while we are in the EU.

  54. Mr Ison
    February 5, 2019

    What draws them to the EU like a fool to an Ignis Fatuus?

    Leave drained the swamp in the British Isles…

    How much EU culture have they bought into?

    Records, films, architecture?

  55. Big John
    February 6, 2019

    I still haven’t seen any real evidence that co2 is a problem.
    The current problems, seem to have been created by members of parliament who don’t do any basic research, and just do what they are told to do.
    When challenged, it is always a EU law and they have no control !!!!

    From what I see, there are only two outcomes on brexit,
    we leave on WTO, or we leave with an FTA.

    Anything else could create a civil war, and some of the remainers might need to improve their security.

  56. Ian
    February 6, 2019

    Why all this rubbish about electric cars, how do you use them, when you cannot charge them , it takes hours, you have to have a small engine going all the time to be able to go anywhere except a short hop into town ?

    How will all this Xtra electricity be generated , everything useing conventional fuel it to be banned ?

    The ultimate fuel is Hydrogen, far better we spend money make that happen, there are No bad things about Hydrogen, the ultimate fuel ?
    The Japanese have a car which runs on it, and you fill it up as you would a regular car ?

    1. Mark
      February 7, 2019

      Hydrogen is expensive to make, difficult to handle with many safety issues, and has a low energy density per unit volume, even when stored at pressures of several hundred atmospheres which can pose a physical explosion risk, never mind chemical burning. Liquid hydrogen requires extremely low temperatures. Apart form that, it’s fine. Incidentally, it’s also why hydrogen is reserved for use as rocket fuel, where the low molecular weight carries an added advantage (thrust is inversely proportional to the square root of molecular weight of the exhaust gas), and where cost is entirely secondary to having enough thrust to reach orbit.

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