Ban SUV adverts to enable the UK to meet its climate goals, says thinktank the New Weather Institute and climate charity Possible.
In the UK, more than 4 in 10 new cars sold in the UK are SUVs, and according to the report, the increase in the sales of these bigger and more polluting vehicles is jeopardising the UK climate goals.
Recent research by the European Environment Agency revealed that the average emissions of new cars sold in the UK have increased in 2019 for the fourth year in a row, with rising sales of SUVs primarily to blame.
In response to this, the authors of the campaign have suggested that advertising for the ‘dirtiest third’ of new cars sold – primarily SUVs – should be banned.
Andrew Simms, co-director of the New Weather Institute, said: ‘We ended tobacco advertising when we understood the threat from smoking to public health.
‘Now that we know the human health and climate damage done by car pollution, it’s time to stop adverts making the problem worse. In a pandemic-prone world, people need clean air and more space in town and city streets.
‘In a climate emergency when we need to make the places where we live more people-friendly, SUVs are in the way of progress.’
Robbie Gillett, campaigner at Possible, said: ‘Whilst millions of us are trying to reduce our carbon footprints to tackle the climate crisis, we have a multi-billion pound car and advertising industry aggressively marketing highly polluting vehicles – many of which are literally too big for UK streets.
‘Their misleading ads promise us freedom and escape – but the reality of urban road conditions is grinding traffic jams, toxic air pollution and spiralling carbon emissions from road transport that will trash our climate goals.
‘Let’s create space to breathe and space to think – free from the advertising pressures of big polluters.’
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