The government’s mandated electric vehicle targets are unrealistic and also another attack on rural dwellers – The Rural Independents

Speaking today (Thursday, 11th August), the leader of the Rural Independent Group, Deputy Mattie Mc Grath, said:

“Banning the sale of new petrol and diesel cars is just another ruinous attack on the Irish way of life by inner-city and government elites under the guise of net zero emissions by 2050.”

“The government’s target for EVs includes an initial figure of 195,000 by 2025, followed by a further 750,000 in 2026-2030. These targets are completely unrealistic considering the ongoing difficulties in manufacturing, distributing, and the pinning of families’ collars due to the everworsening cost-of-living crisis.”

“It is crazy to proceed with this policy, at a time when the Commission for Regulation of Utilities (CRU) and Eirgrid are warning that Ireland must ‘reduce’ electricity demands or face ‘blackouts’ for this coming winter and subsequent ones thereafter.”

“For instance, the government’s second target would require that almost every vehicle purchased here between 2026-2030, new or second-hand, would have to be an EV. This target is not even remotely practical, as no second-hand market for EVs exists, the new options are prohibitively expensive for most people, and the government must wake up to these realities.”

“These government-mandated policy proposals are nothing more than another massive climate tax on Irish citizens, undermining the liveability of our regional and rural communities.”

“With Irish families already facing an unprecedented cost-of-living crisis, while having to decide between eating and heating, the governmental strategy of forcing citizens to now buy electric vehicles, which simultaneously fail to serve their needs and are unaffordable, will only exacerbate matters.”

“Even before the current cost-of-living crisis, most Irish families could not afford to purchase a fancy electric vehicle as their next car; typically, it is only those with high incomes who have shown a willingness to purchase them.”

“The Fianna Fail, Fine Gael, and Green Party target is pressuring ordinary people to have one million such vehicles on Irish roads by 2030, but the cheapest electric family car today costs approximately €38,000, while a second-hand petrol or diesel car can be purchased for as little as several hundred euro. This policy places enormous financial pressures on families.”

“Furthermore, the government also plans to hit already strapped taxpayers with bills to pay for charging stations, which, in effect, is a way to subsidize industry and the more affluent who already own these cars.”

“The EV lobby, electricity companies, and wealthy corporate investors are seeking millions of euros in subsidies from all levels of the Irish government for things such as charging stations and associated infrastructure, which is akin to robbing from the poor and giving to the rich.”

“Outside of Ireland’s five major cities, where public transport is limited or disjointed, a car is essential for social and economic mobility. Thus, limiting the purchase of such cars to limited range electric-powered is a massive attack on all rural residents.”

“Meanwhile, this is occurring when constituents, who already own electric cars, are informing us that they are discarding these cars for diesel and petrol models, due to a lack of charging points, broken existing ones, or unreliable battery range issues.”

“Therefore, the strategy to ban the sale of cheaper petrol and diesel cars is a blatant offense on all rural communities, impacting the least well-off and rural motorists the hardest. We believe this policy is aligned with the government’s punitive urbanisation policy agenda. It also highlights the lobbying influence of corporate elites.”

“Consequently, we are calling on the government to abandon any policy proposal, which would force Irish people to buy expensive electric cars, proving to be expensive to charge as electricity prices continue to soar. The time has come for the government to row back on these elite policies, give ordinary people a break, cease trying to exert control over people, and recognize the financial burdens they are under,” concluded Deputy Mc Grath



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