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Government plans to disincentivise purchase of gas guzzlers

Written By: - Date published: 7:45 am, July 9th, 2019 - 134 comments
Categories: climate change, Environment, greens, julie anne genter, public transport, science, transport - Tags:

If we are going to be carbon neutral by 2050 then something radical has to be done about transport.  It has been explained to me that basically from 2030 all new introductions into the vehicle fleet have to be electric or hydrogen powered.

And the Government has started the work now on tilting the vehicle fleet away from gas guzzlers and towards more efficient vehicles.  By announcing a proposal to tax the former and give a discount for the latter.

From Craig McCulloch at Radio New Zealand:

Heavy-polluting gas guzzlers could soon be slapped with an import fee, with the revenue going towards subsidising clean, green vehicles.

Associate Transport Minister Julie-Anne Genter has revealed a government proposal of price hikes and discounts for light vehicle imports based on their CO2 emissions by 2021.

The plan – which is designed to revenue neutral, costing taxpayers nothing – would add a range of fees or subsidies.

It would mean about $8000 off the price of new or near-new imported electric vehicles (EVs). Fuel-efficient petrol cars would also be cheaper, while the heaviest-polluters would cost $3000 more. Vehicles with middling fuel efficiency would face neither a discount nor a fee.

The scheme would cover all new and used light vehicles coming into the country. It would not apply to cars already on New Zealand roads.

A new fuel efficiency standard would also be introduced, requiring importers to gradually reduce the average emissions of the vehicles they bring in.

Ms Genter said the policies would help make electric, hybrid and fuel-efficient vehicles a “realistic option” for more New Zealanders by reducing their upfront cost.

“The most popular SUV in New Zealand right now is a [Toyota] RAV4. Under this policy, the hybrid version would be cheaper than the petrol version.”

Ms Genter said New Zealanders would also save thousands of dollars because of lower transport costs over their lifetime. The discounts and fees would be displayed on vehicles available for sale.

She said it was only fair that the discounts be financed by “small fees” on the most polluting vehicles. For example, a brand new Toyota Land Cruiser – which retails for more than $100,000 – would be hiked $3000.

There would also be discounts/price hikes for used vehicles.

The move is a good one although there still needs to be a debate about the amount of sunken energy there is in the construction of vehicles.  And continuous improvements in public transport as well as micro transport options such as the dreaded scooters will still need to be an important part of the mix.  We are going to have to review the way that we travel as well as what we drive.

No doubt there will be an outcry from the urban living SUV drivers wondering how they are going to cope.  I can hardly wait to hear Mike Hosking’s take on the issue. 

But if we are to become carbon neutral we need to drive petroleum consumption down as close to zero as we can manage.  Best we start now.

134 comments on “Government plans to disincentivise purchase of gas guzzlers ”

  1. Sanctuary 1

    Everyone who knows anything about this thinks this is a smart, forward looking initiative that is well overdue.

    So look forward to a pile of steaming culture war horseshit of blowhard reckons from put-upon ignorant, angry, entitled and privileged white males in the media.

    • mickysavage 1.1

      Heh. I can hardly wait …

      • Cinny 1.1.1

        Lmao !!! Because it's started already. The ranger rover crowd are freaking out.

        Meanwhile the average kiwi who can't afford either a ranger rover or an EV are over the moon.

        • Roflcopter 1.1.1.1

          The latest PHEV Range Rover has less fuel consumption and less CO2 emissions than the latest PHEV Toyota RAV4… the Range Rover should be heavily discounted to encourage those that can afford to, can move across.

        • logie97 1.1.1.2

          Those farmers and tradies being hit again! Are they the "business" vehicles that you will see parked in country golf clubs all over NZ, any day of the week? Surely they wouldn't be using them for non-business purposes – surely not.

          • c9j9rt 1.1.1.2.1

            So should farmers actually have two cars?? One for running the farm (Hilux) and one for going to golf?? Ludicrous. There is nothing wrong about using a business vehicle for private use within certain limits and declared in a log book. Every rep, CEO, GM, small business owner, tradie, self employed does it but you seem to imply farmers should buy a second car just to go to golf? Do you expect them to walk there if they don't take the farm/business vehicle??

            • logie97 1.1.1.2.1.1

              Tempting to use the expression "get on your bike!" as Thatcher's Norman Tebbitt would have said.

              Farmers and tradies argue they need the twin cabs for their work. You can rest assured the the owners of these twin cabs have a very attractive alternative motor as well. In all probability the latest SUV. And log every trip for personal use for the accountant – dream on!

            • KJT 1.1.1.2.1.2

              When I was a tradie, I had a work van/SUV, and a smaller, "family car", just like every tradie and farmer, I ever met.

    • Sacha 1.2

      It's tinkering, as anyone who knows anything about sustainable transport will tell you.

      • mickysavage 1.2.1

        I agree that much much more is required, like for instance light rail throughout Auckland. And I personally like scooters.

        But this is part of the mix of solutions.

        • Sacha 1.2.1.1

          But what do informed young activists make of it? http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1907/S00112/generation-zeros-response-to-clear-car-announcement.htm

          While electrification of our light vehicle fleet is a necessary step towards reducing our transport emissions, priority should be given to public and active (cycling and walking) modes of transport to promote a modal shift (cars to other forms of transport).

          Generation Zero believes that the Clean Car Discount should be targeted to people without the means to buy an electric vehicle, people with disabilities who need specific or modified vehicle transportation, and people in rural areas that do not have access to other modes of transport.

          Generation Zero does not support the lack of ambition shown throughout the policy proposal: from excluding the government’s own fleet, to adopting a Clean Car Standard that does not measure up to the EU’s standard.

          I did not realise that govt had exempted its own vehicles – when they are in a perfect position to lead by example. Nor that our proposed standard is weaker than those set elsewhere. Journalists, eh.

          • Sam 1.2.1.1.1

            by more more needs to be done. So less than half a barrel of oil goes to transportation, about 4% is converted to plastic and what doesn't get discard is converted to fertilisers or medicines. So even if we eliminate gas guzzlers there's actually a lot of growth potential left in the oil industry to expand its other operations. So I mean these linear equations Y'know as if R+L= the results, they don't work. Linear equations don't work in complex societies. So I'm wondering you know what would you do with the other half of the barrel of oil priced at $57 a barrel. Y'know that's still a lot of money just sitting there. So okay, do the gazzlers programme, but you understand all the risks don't you?

        • Bewildered 1.2.1.2

          Scooters are highly inefficient in regard to carbon output

          • mickysavage 1.2.1.2.1

            I prefer their use if people catch a train then use a scooter for the final 500m as opposed to driving everywhere.

            Keen to read on their carbon efficiency if you want to post a link.

          • KJT 1.2.1.2.2

            Yeah right. Compared to cars?

        • Poission 1.2.1.3

          And I personally like scooters.

          AKA the new hula hoop.

          shelf life 1-3 months.

          https://phys.org/news/2019-07-electric-scooters-eco-friendly.html

          • Hanswurst 1.2.1.3.1

            Did you read the whole article, Poission? I don't think it says what you think it does.

    • Chris T 1.3

      Half the SUVs I see have women driving them, but by all means put it down to some privileged white male thing.

      Everything else is, so why not

      • RedLogix 1.3.1

        Bugger me I even see some brown and yellow people driving them. Who let that happen?

      • Sacha 1.3.2

        The women are way less likely to be bloviating in the media, Chris. 🙂

        • c9j9rt 1.3.2.1

          Aaah maybe they should be bloviating in the media more then. Get off their butts and bloviate.

    • So look forward to a pile of steaming culture war horseshit of blowhard reckons from put-upon ignorant, angry, entitled and privileged white males in the media.

      I'm half expecting to see a news report that Mike Hosking has been found dead from a suspected fit of apoplexy.

      [lprent: Just don’t wish for it as that’d violate behaviour rules. Besides I suspect that his totem animal is a roach. Annoying in the kitchen, hard to get rid of, live on garbage, and wouldn’t mind living in a fetid stinking humid chaotic environment – which he is happy to create. ]

    • woodart 1.6

      yes, my new invention, canned outrage,just add bile,(t.m..) will be in big demand by put upon sad sacks with large amounts of hot air to exhale . would like the gov to put a levy on my invention, so the entitled can help further subsidize their own extintion….canned outrage, just add bile.(t.m.). also appeals to put upon christians….now available in congregation sized packets. also a special farmer size packet, water and whingeproof

      • KJT 1.7.1

        No. The tax on gas guzzlers needs to be much higher than the current proposals.

        • Shadrach 1.7.1.1

          You missed the point. Not all the vehicles people describe as “gas guzzlers actually are”. And people who want vehicles that cost more to run will just pay the difference.

          • KJT 1.7.1.1.1

            That makes it easier. Charge by the extent of gas guzzling. Though most of your fellow right wingers would howl, if we put petrol taxes up even more, to subsidise low income earners into more economical cars.

            I have a gas guzzler myself, used for carrying heavy stuff, towing and very occasional holiday trips. The actual gas used is not much.

            The daily ride is a little Suzuki, which sips petrol by the spoonful. Less than many hybrids.

            • Shadrach 1.7.1.1.1.1

              "…to subsidise low income earners into more economical cars."

              Why should anyone subsidise anyone else's vehicle purchase?

              "…Charge by the extent of gas guzzling."

              We already do. Your gas guzzler costs you more in petrol, and therefore more in the tax on the petrol.

              • KJT

                Obviously you have been asleep for the last few decades.

                Anthropogenic Global Warming, is why we should subsidise more energy efficient cars. Heard of that?

                And. Why should poor people bear all the extra costs of transition. Even if wealthy right wingers prefer it that way.

                At the moment they buy gas guzzlers, because the initial Capital outlay is much less. At present small cars are relatively more costly to buy. And they are stuck with the extra fuel costs.

                Are you advocating more fuel taxes? Good idea, charging for carbon emissions, , but imagine the screams about infringing on the right to pollute

                • Shadrach

                  "Anthropogenic Global Warming, is why we should subsidise more energy efficient cars. Heard of that?"

                  Sure, but you clearly know nothing about the issue if you think the answer, or even progress, is made by switching to EV's. EV’s are not the panacea to the worlds environmental problems they are made out to be.

                  And. Why should poor people bear all the extra costs of transition. Even if wealthy right wingers prefer it that way."

                  They shouldn't, but that isn't what you said. You talked about us subsidising "low income earners into more economical cars."

                  "At the moment they buy gas guzzlers, because the initial Capital outlay is much less. At present small cars are relatively more costly to buy. And they are stuck with the extra fuel costs."

                  So these people suddenly can afford a new EV with a subsidy of $8,000?

                  "Are you advocating more fuel taxes? Good idea, charging for carbon emissions, , but imagine the screams about infringing on the right to pollute"

                  Your infatuation with EV's matches the governments stupidity.

                  "…widespread adoption of electric vehicles nationwide will likely increase air pollution compared with new internal combustion vehicles. You read that right: more electric cars and trucks will mean more pollution."

                  https://www.politico.com/agenda/story/2018/05/15/are-electric-cars-worse-for-the-environment-000660

  2. Cinny 2

    Awesome news !!! Thanks Julie-Anne.

    We've wanted an EV for the longest time, but it's way out of our price range. If this goes through our dreams will become reality. My girls will be sooooo happy, what wonderful news.

    • David Mac 2.1

      The start price for Nissan Leafs is at about $8000 now. With a warranty, from a dealer. The annoying thing about a warranty with a petrol/diesel car is the requirement to be fastidious with the servicing of the vehicle or waive the cover. With an EV, no oil, no filters etc. Servicing costs are way cheaper.

      If I was a young man looking to make a fortune I would be looking very closely at the procedures required to install new internals into factory electric car battery packs.

      • David Mac 2.1.1

        A renewing EV battery business model has good potential for adding value without touching the overheads. "Would you like your range lifted from 200 to 300kms Mr Smith?"

      • WeTheBleeple 2.1.2

        "If I was a young man looking to make a fortune I would be looking very closely at the procedures required to install new internals into factory electric car battery packs."

        Yep, sound thinking. Reconditioned batteries will be in hot demand.

        And upgrades? You are ahead of the pack there. Great posts.

      • Cinny 2.1.3

        Servicing costs are way cheaper

        It's the little things like that which will drastically change lives for those on low incomes.

  3. Wayne 3

    Overall pretty good. Also good to see that conventional fuel efficient small cars will benefit. That latter point help lower income people and students. Lots of young people, and elderly retired, drive such vehicles.

    Winston was on the AM show this morning. He denied the surcharge would apply to farm/rural vehicles that were not brand new. On the basis of the information so far, he was wrong. It is possible/probable he will get some form of exemption for such vehicles, given that it is a draft policy.

    Also the Ford Ranger, beloved by all tradies (at least where I live), will be hit with a $3,000 increase, so expect to see an increase in the hourly rate charged by builders, electricians, plumbers, etc. I guess $3 to $5 per hour.

    • observer 3.1

      And a reduction in their hourly rates when they modernise their vehicle and get the rebate?

      No. Didn't think so.

      I suppose my cotton sheets would be so much cheaper if the slaves in Mississippi still picked it. Bloody liberals, costing me money with their principles.

      • mac1 3.1.1

        observer, think of the opportunities you have for righteous liberal virtue -ignalling by buying cotton sheets from non-slave labour sources.

        The 18th century American Quaker and abolitionist John Woolman would only wear undyed clothing as the black dye used at the time was produced by slave labour. The original virtue signaller!

    • WeTheBleeple 3.2

      Why, I do believe your math needs some skills. And all the alleged soon to be overcharging Parnelope Pit-Stop Princesses.

      First they take the GST back. Then there's the depreciation rate, highest in the world – to claim as losses of 30%.

      So that 33K vehicle gets a business owner 9K to write off interest free (company savings ~ 3K) – SEE! – the money trickled sideways already, in one year.

      The GST – $4304, is an added bonus for a business owner. So that's about $7.3K advantage to the businessman vs the worker purchasing the same vehicle.

      Of course, the workers never get paid enough to afford new vehicles in the first place; no depreciation for them, and not claiming GST they'll not receive that back either.

      But of course I feel the tears welling for their plight, justifying the 6 000 to 10 000 annual increase in fees you reckon Tradies will claim as a result of a 3K one-off charge.

      • Wayne 3.2.1

        Well, they have the all the deductions you mention already. Yes, I was assuming they would recover more than they should. As you point out the actual effect should only be a $1.00 extra per hour. Every tradie in the North Shore seems to have a relatively new 4 cab ute. Most of them have done pretty well over the last few years. Most of them with a trade certificate and 5 years post certificate/diploma would earn significantly more than a teacher.

        • Graeme 3.2.1.1

          Most of them have done pretty well over the last few years

          More like their bank has done pretty well over the last few years.

          The Ranger crowd around here are mostly mortgaged to the eyeballs, or beyond, and once there's the slightest dip in property all the toys will be on the side of the road with "for sale" signs and they'll be leaving town in some banger they bought off a backpacker.

          Oh, and there'll be several other sub-tradies screaming for the 3 months invoices Ranger boy owes them.

    • Kevin 3.3

      Fortunately Wayne, there is enough competition in the tradie sector that those who do want to pass it on will miss out on the work.

    • Pat 3.4

      "will be hit with a $3,000 increase, so expect to see an increase in the hourly rate charged by builders, electricians, plumbers, etc. I guess $3 to $5 per hour."

      so tradies are going to increase their charge out rate by around $6-10.000 pa to recoup an additional outlay of less than $1000 pa….dont give up your day job Wayne

    • Anne 3.5

      Since I live where Wayne lives I can testify to the proliferation of Ford Rangers. I can also testify to the blanket spread of SUVs hogging the local streets and parking spots and making it extremely difficult for anyone trying to see around them or past them while driving or parking. They usually have one yuppie Mum (status symbol) in them.

      The sooner these gas guzzling monstrosities are banned from the roads the better.

      • woodart 3.5.1

        unfortunatley, the sort of people that need to drive a mountain climber on city streets will replace there oil burner with a similar sized electric. an electric truck for yummie mummies is just as stupid as an oil burner …

        • Wayne 3.5.1.1

          In the more affluent parts of North Shore the transition will happen quite quickly. I expect to see a lot of largish European plug in hybrid SUV's on the streets within the next two years. There are already quite a few Tesla X vehicles in Devonport. And they sure are a big vehicle. Devonport being rather more wealthy than Bayswater!

          Of course none of these hybrids or pure electrics will qualify for the subsidy, being over $80,000. The subsidy is not really much of a market driver for the would be purchasers. However, the pressure from their kids certainly will be.

          • Sam 3.5.1.1.1

            Roughly speaking, you can have things like the "100 kWh" battery actually being 120 kWh by how laptop manufacturers would use it, but the EV manufacturer deliberately sets it up so that only 100 kWh of capacity is reported and usable to the consumer. As the battery degrades, the system charges it to a slightly higher voltage to keep the 100 kWh warranty. Since only charging a battery to 80% or so can quadruple the number of charges it can sustain, this drastically increases the life of the battery. I know I know, it's a bloody great big corporate conspiracy to earn profit. But I think we don't even appreciate how much efficiencies and utilisation and cost effectiveness consumers can get out of 2nd generation EVs.

  4. Sanctuary 4

    LoL there is some car importer dude harrumphing on the radio right now that his religious belief in his unfettered right to do what he wants in the name of the free market is under threat.

    ZOMG! YOU ARE INTERFERING WITH THE MARKET FOR A POLICY GOAL!!!!

    And now federated farmers are harrumphing with folksy anecdotes in support of SUVs.

    White men upset at change.

    • mickysavage 4.1

      Yep. He thinks that it is draconian and inequitable. I wonder if he has thought what living on a dead planet would be like.

      Now there is a Federated Farmers spokes person. I wonder if he will be supportive?

      • mickysavage 4.1.1

        Ah no he says it is an attack on rural people … apparently farmers are completely incapable of changing their behaviour.

        • Matiri 4.1.1.1

          Andrew Hoggard – double cab utes are just soooo useful when you pop into town for the groceries.
          So is the current tax break Mr Hoggard ……

        • Dennis Frank 4.1.1.2

          Just doing his job, then. But he could do better. Use macho male culture & language. Remind farmers that when the going gets tough, the tough get going, and this is just another time for them to toughen up.

          He could even suggest they look at reforming the Pull Yourself Together party. Farmers doing their thing unencumbered by namby-pamby urban liberal Nats could be a goer due to MMP.

          • WeTheBleeple 4.1.1.2.1

            Heresy! laugh

          • woodart 4.1.1.2.2

            yes, they could get that clown with the tractor to pull the same stunt at parliament ., but with a double cab ute smoking away….

            • Dennis Frank 4.1.1.2.2.1

              yeah that dude could do a rerun with smoke belching, tyres spinning so fast on parliament's steps the cloud of burnt rubber & pollution would waft inside through the aircon ducts, petrolheads watching it on the tv news would have an orgasm…

        • New view 4.1.1.3

          Farmers can change their behaviour along with everyone else so long as they will have the electric Ute or similar, to choose from. Otherwise the extra costs will just be another tax directed at them. Oh and some piddly thing that goes 60 km before it needs a charge won’t cut it.

          • KJT 4.1.1.3.1

            Farmers only buy new ford rangers because, unlike a flash family type car, they can pretend it is a farm vehicle and get the tax rebate, while still having a status symbol. Which is why we have double cab Utes, in the first place.

            On the farm they use an old 4WD, diesel Ute with a flat deck, mud tyres, and 300k on the clock.

            • woodart 4.1.1.3.1.1

              most farm utes are an ideal thing to be electric. mostly, they do very few miles, but lots of hours idling. perfect electric vehicle terms.

            • New view 4.1.1.3.1.2

              Really. I’m a retired farmer what are you. The utes are UTILITY vehicles. Of course they go to town in them but they are One Ton utes for a reason. They also cart fence posts fertiliser cement seed all of which won’t fit in the back of a station wagon. Of course there are farmers that really only use them to go to town but even they will have a broken appliance or stuff for recycling on the back occasionally. People in the country don’t get all their stuff delivered like those in town. As for the tax aspect there is some truth in what you say but not much. The farmers would still buy them but gst refund makes them more affordable. Farmers wives and kids are a common sight at the back of the farm and use double cabs. My son picks his kids up from school because his wife works 30 miles away. She has a Ford Focus he has an aging Hilux. Don’t generalise and judge people buy your own misinformation.

              • David Mac

                Hi New view, are you familiar with a company called Rivian? I believe Ford have just taken a big slice. 0-60mph in 3 seconds….that is Lamborghini acceleration in a Ford Ranger sized rig, torque that would pull stumps. Fill it up with a windmill, nice.

                I think in the not too distant future Ford Rangers et al will take on the aura of pedal driven dentistry.

                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QMfxJEfb4lw&t=12s

              • woodart

                I dont class myself as a farmer but live ruraly, have a 4wd, that is used for work,and general short daily runs, and my landlord has three diesel 4wd for his workers. none of us do more than 100k daily, carry fenceposts, sprayers, dogs, firewood, cement, fenceing wire etc. whats your point? my point is that many, if not most rural daily drivers are ideal candidates for electric…

                [Deleted 17 non-breaking spaces that created one very large white empty space in this comment – Incognito]

              • KJT

                I used to do a lot of construction work for farmers.

                As well as having many in the family.

                Observation, not "misinformation".

            • Ian 4.1.1.3.1.3

              You forgot about towing the boat.

              And getting the GST back while claiming depreciation ,fuel ,servicing etc is totally legitimate.

  5. AklTransport 5

    Why doesn't the government prioritise the use of public transport over cars in our largest city by committing the light rail to the airport spend on new ferries and buses to increase network coverage across the city? Buses that can in the most part travel in 24 hour 7 day a week bus lanes. 1 each way on each major arterial road, which for the most part are already 4 lane, and motorway. Increasing car congestion while lessening public transport congestion and improving service.

    no fixed line overheads, greater ability to handle surges in demand, takes people of the roads and via natural transit routes.

    Rather than just simply bullying people into using their preferred car type or a fixed route train set? This government is long on rhetoric on these things but refuses to use a comprehensive suite of tools to achieve it's policy aims. Including the absurdly simple ones listed above rather than speeding people to the airport to burn carbon

    • Cinny 5.1

      For those like myself who don't live in a city there is little to no public transport, so this announcement is massive.

    • mickysavage 5.2

      Agreed about prioritising light rail and ferries busses and there needs to be light rail to the nor west and conversion of the North Shore busway to light rail and I would even be keen to see light rail on Tamaki Drive if they can avoid sea level increases.

      But I disagree that this is bullying. It is more the use of tweaks to market forces to get the desired outcome.

      • Poission 5.2.1

        A good start would be the ministerial fleet, including self drive cars to be fully EV no exceptions.

        https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12177038

        • Cinny 5.2.1.1

          Circa 2017….

          The Government has been accused of buying a "pitiful" number of electric vehicles since it committed to promoting sustainable transport.

          Just eight of the 2039 vehicles bought under the Government's procurement system between April and September last year were electric or EVs, Labour's transport spokeswoman Sue Moroney said.

          That was despite Energy and Transport Minister Simon Bridges unveiling a series of incentives in May to "drive the switch to electric vehicles".

          Dodgy ole key and his sidekick simon are to blame for the lack of ministerial EV's.

          https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/88189485/govt-called-out-for-limp-commitment-to-electric-vehicles-in-own-fleet

          simon used to talk up EV's but I don't ever recall national when in government offering large discounts on EV's compared with Julie Ann's stellar plan.

      • AklTransport 5.2.2

        what light rail? Light rail is not the answer for auckland. Buses operating in dedicated bus lanes ( which are existing, but used part time for parking and cars)

        light rail is an expensive toy beloved of politicians, unionists who imagine a ready made customer base and raincoats. It ignores the pressing realities of the transport problem in auckland. There isn’t time to wait till a train set is built. That adequately services the sprawl of auckland.

        And cinny, buses can be used in every town in the county if enough people used them.

        this government policy tweaks the market? Who cares? The market has failed to provide and all this does is force consumers to pay for more expensive toys. I can afford an EV, but I don’t want too. What about those in auckland struggling to pay rent, let alone fund an EV too? Improve the bus network and penalise all car users with further congestion

        • Cinny 5.2.2.1

          We've two buses a day going into the city 🙂

          I'm in Motueka, awesome place.

          Happy as to pay for more public transport in the cities, would love rail to return to the Nelson region.

          In the meantime, cheaper EV's… yes please

          • greywarshark 5.2.2.1.1

            Edit
            Cars yes – good move but alongside buses. As you say it takes time to get the train tracks down. Only problem with buses and dedicated lanes for them is what I read of in one redneck USA city, a council managed to get a majority to take away an established bus lane to allow for more car traffic. One step forward, two steps back, the eejit conservatives have myopia and no dedication to the public, just their cohort.

            Interesting discussion I had today about Auckland and transport. I have a relation in Whangarei and family who want to care for him in Auckland. But where he would want to buy a house in Auckland, and he can afford to do so, would mean snailing through gridlock on both the motorways and any secondary suitable routes to visit or aid him. Probably for an hour+more just when he needed us. It is not worth the effort to persuade him to uproot and leave Whangarei, about 2 hours away.

            The little generals in Auckland and the females of note, all go about their small-minded business doing as little as possible for the people, and planning their next major extravaganza to bring the exotic overseas people to visit which enables them to build small palaces and parks and gardens of pleasure that they couldn't justify getting otherwise. They are the reason why we have never determined to bite the bullet and obtain the capital to invest in Auckland's transport system. Their ideas are bigger than their pockets.

            Why don't they just go overseas and stay and ponce around there? Answer, in a bigger place they would appear as the nobodys they really are.

        • KJT 5.2.2.2

          Right. Rail is only used in most cities in the world, because?

          • Graeme 5.2.2.2.1

            Rail is only used in most cities in the world, because?

            Because it's there, and has been since the place became a modern city. It would be a different story if Auckland, and all other New Zealand cities hadn't got rid of their trams.

            Auckland lost the "tram culture" in it's inhabitants (especially drivers) and infrastructure managers, who saw the tram corridor as an ideal place to put inground infrastructure. Going back will difficult, expensive and disruptive as whole streets have to be rebuilt to provide a clear corridor for the trams.

            The only cogent argument I've seen for light rail, rather than new heavy rail, is that the city owns the corridor. I'm not sure that actually makes it any easier or cheaper.

  6. observer 6

    We know this is a good policy because National will a) complain about it, then b) stop talking about it, then c) not campaign on it at the election, and d) keep it if/when they get back in.

    • Enough is Enough 6.1

      Kind of like Rogernomics

      When we are in opposition we always talk about the devastating social effects of post '84 neo-liberal reforms.

      Now we are in government, we tinker and largely stay silent on repealing everything that Douglas and Richardson did.

  7. Ad 7

    I would prefer to see NZ aligning with Australia to almost-ban the importation of older light vehicles.

    It has better and broader benefits.

    Australia's average fleet age is 10.1 years, with 30% 5 years or younger. Ours is just a dumping ground for crap.

    Going for whole fleet shifts is powerful.

    That way we achieve the emissions reduction benefits, but also benefits in crash reduction, fatality reduction, particulate reduction, injury reduction, and bunches of ACC benefits.

    • Muttonbird 7.1

      How do low-income people get around?

      • RedLogix 7.1.1

        Same as always, by setting a target date a decade into the future the value of second hand ICE vehicles drops dramatically. This means cheap cars will be plentiful for a decade and by then there should be a market for second hand EV's.

      • Cinny 7.1.2

        In cars without WOF's because they can't afford the maintenance.

    • RedLogix 7.2

      An even simpler approach would be to ban ICE's by 2030.

      The point that needs making is that NZ is at the far end of a global supply chain that IS already committed to a massive transition to EV’s. We need to be on board.

      • Ad 7.2.1

        I don't think we should move faster than Australia on vehicle importing policy.

        We're a tiny and poorly regulated vehicle market, making us very vulnerable to dumping, or to having the import tap turned off in ways we don't want.

        We are takers and will never have any power in this space.

        Australia leads us in most respects on vehicle importing. Banning the internal combustion engine should wait until our key import markets of Japan, Australia and Singapore make those moves first.

      • Graeme 7.2.2

        I doubt a ban will be necessary because ICEs will be like horses in 1913, they will have been replaced by something much better for society.

        In late 1800's cities were dealing with a transport pollution crisis that was solved by ICEs. We are somewhere along a similar transition as we deal with the issues caused by ICEs. My pick is that we are getting very close to the end of ICEs in everyday usage, probably before 2030.

  8. Sacha 8

    Urban public transport is the best way to reduce our overall emissions, not private cars. Converting trucks to electric will also have a bigger impact.

    Subsidising new electric cars is great for those who can afford them, sure. I recognise that the politics of this move will snooker the Nats and have obviously kept Winston First happy around the cabinet table.

    But it's tinkering. If we want to ban old polluting vehicles, let's do that – alongside ensuring that businesses and poorer families have genuine transport options.

    • solkta 8.1

      This scheme will subsidies second hand EVs and second hand cheap to run ICEs, not just new EVs.

    • AB 8.2

      Yep – subsidy dollars would probably be better spent making public transport free at the point of use – and getting private operators out of the sector to remove the dead-weight of profit-taking.

      However we love the outdoors. Getting places in our cars where no public transport can realistically get us is the one and only quality of life advantage that NZ offers over other countries. Any government messes with that at their peril So it's a good move to shift whatever remains of the fleet to EVs. Cheap and plentiful EV hire would also be something to look at for the lower income – grab one for the weekend if you plan to take the family to one of Auckland's regional parks for a barbecue etc.

    • greywarshark 8.3

      Thinking about older vehicles – leaving the ones already in NZ to be used up, being fixed up with second-hand parts, is resulting in reduced throw-outs and their pollution from manufacturing will have been amortised over many years. An old car in hand that goes is worth much more than eg having ten buses half a mile away to catch a train to school, for four children, or to skoot to work for five miles at 6am.

  9. Pat 9

    Id venture to suggest that the flagged taxes will have very little impact on vehicle purchase choices….those who were looking to change will be pleased for the discount and those disinclined will have something to grumble about and carry on regardless

  10. I'm a petrol guzzling Hot Rodder. Money won't drive me from my passion.

    • David Mac 10.1

      Yes, I too am fond of a big block. A further clipping was inevitable. If it has to be, I think this is the way to go. An extra $4k paid coming off the ticket on an EV.

  11. David Mac 11

    I live 156 kms from the closest traffic lights. I'm not expecting a public transport system, footpaths or next door neighbours any time in my lifetime.

    I'd like my expensive hobby to include a thirsty American ICE and 95% of my driving electric.

    • lprent 11.1

      Whats the data rate like?

    • woodart 11.2

      me too. I have a speedway saloon, but expect, and want an electric vehicle for day running. my normal day running rarely exceeds 50 k and an electric would suit me fine. put a tow bar on it and it can tow my oil burner to the track.

    • RedLogix 11.3

      The past four months I've been using an electric bike 98% of the time. I get to feel smug about how it's costing me fuck all, feel really virtuous about my carbon footprint … and usually get the best parking right at the door.

  12. David Mac 12

    I don't have one at the moment but generally around 400hp/12mpg

  13. mac1 13

    I have an EV. Instead of a larger one off incentive, how about ongoing incentives with the registration fee, WOF fee, based on engine size and fuel consumption? That would mean existing small car/EV owners would be rewarded.

    Perhaps not paying road tax is sufficient incentive. (120,000 km at $72 per 1000 km is $8640 in equivalent diesel road user charges.)

    The feeling of being rewarded would be an annual one, not just a one off at purchase, even though the purchase price incentive might be more effective, being perceptibly larger.

    If the true facts about EV usage were known, then they should be more popular. A mate charged his EV yesterday at a public utility. $2 cost, five minutes delay for me as a passenger to hold an interesting conversation with a retired Land Cruiser driver who seemed to need it to carry his dog, and enough power to travel a further 35 kms. The Land Cruiser would have travelled possibly ten km on $2 worth of fuel?

    Over the next ten years at 12000 km per annum I will save over $21,000 dollars in fuel (at 30c per kw/h charging at home ) against a fossil fuel-powered vehicle consuming 10km/l. At that stage my battery will need replacing at a cost of $8000. I'm still way ahead, even though my EV cost more to buy in equivalent quality terms. If I borrowed $10000 to cover the extra cost of an EV, I'd still be ahead (about $14000 to pay back over ten years), and the depreciation is lower.

    In all, a good move from the government environmentally to incentivise more economical vehicles and EV usage especially.

    • Pat 13.1

      the RUC dispensation for EV users is indeed a great incentive….and one that is self destroying for as soon as EV uptake begins to grow as a percentage of our fleet it will begin to remove the wherewithal to fund the infrastructure….enjoy it while you can

    • Dennis Frank 13.2

      Good comment. I've been driving my plug-in hybrid 2.5 years and am no less satisfied (it was a year-old import). Got it simultaneous with selling out of Ak & discovering my neighbour is an electrical inspector, got him to install the high-current plug in my new basement garage immediately.

      So I was baffled at the discussion on the AM show this morning. The assertion that farmers wouldn't buy them due to lack of plug-in facilities, plus having it go unchallenged by the panel. Only cost me pittance to install. Where's the problem??

      • patricia bremner 13.2.1

        Anyone who has had a motor home years ago had a plug to charge up the batteries.

        We all need to learn to do things differently. Farmers and others, are quick to get on board when it hits the pocket.

        Moaning doesn't cost anything and lets off steam .. venting.. lol lol

        • WeTheBleeple 13.2.1.1

          The steam from some quarters might be a significant energy source.

          I'm sure they've been having at themselves with battery powered devices for some time now. They'll adjust.

  14. David Mac 14

    The older we get, the less comfortable we are with change. As the tsunami of baby boomers move into retirement villages etc…They're the ideal market for EV's. They've got a few $ and rarely travel further than 200kms.

    I wonder if a fleet of half a dozen electric cars with amiable older minders touring Retirement Villages around NZ and taking older drivers out on "Come and have a go ya Wrinkly" drives could help. Hmmmm possibly a good initiative for an EV retailer. Weekends, they could set appts in near abandoned industrial areas for the unwary and slightly reluctant to come and have a 'no pressure' (read 'super soft sell') go.

    • Wayne 14.1

      Good idea to get Grey Power and Retirement Village operators involved. A lot of older people would find an EV (Leaf) perfect for their motoring.

      Me, I am aiming at a Plug In Hybrid SUV. All the manufacturers are now releasing such vehicles, with around 50 km electric range. Be better if it was 100 km. But 50 km will cover probably 60% of my driving.

      • WeTheBleeple 14.1.1

        Good work. No really, it's a biggie having you in a hybrid. The more people in positions of influence/public exposure adopting the technology the faster we transition to sustainable transport. Good for all of us. You could maybe do some shopping around – you might find greater range in other models.

        I want to run a touring company which historically did a lot of miles. The longer range vehicles are out of my league for now, but this legislation (and constant improvements as the tech develops) look good for the future. In the interim, I can run tours within the greater AK region and remain sustainable. Gives me leg-room to re-establish bread-and-butter gigs before expanding.

        The point of price drop/tech increase meeting my needs will become reality far faster with this legislation.

      • Dennis Frank 14.1.2

        Mine gets me 90%, in time spent driving – but that's New Plymouth, not Auckland. I travel out of town in my motorhome (they're still diesel). I agree oldies would find them user-friendly (I'm nearly 70). Driving is a dream. Never had any hassles with operating the vehicle.

        That said, user-manuals written by people only pretending to write in English would freak some. One must learn to read between the lines. Keyless driving is cool, but I discovered I had to incorporate the mental discipline of actually remembering to pocket the key (electronic innards) before descending to the basement. You have to carry it so the car gets the signal that the person pushing the button on the door is the authorised owner.

  15. mac1 15

    Depending what comes out from this goverment initiative, it would first be a place where Grey Power could advocate for older car owners and then, after Govt has made up its mind and issued an active policy, advocate to its membership on the financial pluses of using EVs.

    There could well be a beneficial partnership with Grey Power electricity. Their CEO at Pulse Energy is a real advocate at GP AGMs for EVs. He got me converted to EVs.

    • Sacha 15.1

      Better yet, get Grey Power to support electric car share schemes for retirement villages. Enough so you can get one easily enough when you need it but not so many that you need to park and maintain them all. More room for green spaces.

      • mac1 15.1.1

        EVs can also be used as battery storage for housing grouping, such as retirement complexes, whereby cheaper non-peak charges can be utilised when required. There is a loss iof energy nvolved in the process but it is still used overseas in communal groupings.

        • Sacha 15.1.1.1

          Great idea.

          • David Mac 15.1.1.1.1

            I think you both have good ideas Sacha and mac1. A fleet of EV's at a retirement village and partakers collectively paying for insurance, charging etc is a great idea. A usage ceiling to deter hogs, a few more dollars on the body corporate fees, book them online. A village staff member could keep them clean and serviced. 10 EV's could service 100 households.

            • Sacha 15.1.1.1.1.1

              Thank you. And here's an example of a locally-available EV that can charge a home: https://www.stuff.co.nz/motoring/114066864/nissan-turns-over-a-new-leaf-in-nz

              But one of the Leaf's most interesting selling points is the fact it is one of the only EVs in New Zealand to offer bi-directional charging, with the ability to put electricity back into the grid or, more specifically, your home.

              Nissan are playing up the biggest plus of this – the ability to charge your Leaf at night using cheaper electricity, then power your house during the day. Or, you know, drive your car. That's not even touching on the remarkable smugness of having a fully-powered house during a power cut…

    • WeTheBleeple 16.1

      You mean the false equivalence where Seymour claims petrol taxes are an EV subsidy? A good point?

      No, the EV's not using petrol are not taxed on said non-existent petrol use as they don't use it. And the hybrids using less petrol are of course taxed less for less petrol.

      Similarly, my bicycle has ZERO petrol tax. Outrageous!

  16. Ed1 17

    It is not clear whether the proposed system is intended to be cost neutral, but the opposition appears to be they are happy with cash incentives but don't want them to paid for by other sales. If the charges / discounts are intended to be cash neutral then they will need to be adjusted as the market changes. I don't think exempting EVs from road user charges is sustainable long term, but I also think that only road user charges in general should be based on emissions as well as weight, configuration and distance travelled. I don't know when they were last reviewed, but heavy trucks, and busses, do seem to damage roads, particularly in hot conditions on bends. If all vehicles were on Road User charges the cost of fuel could be reduced, with the emissions component of charges based on testing at the time of each warrant. In fairness, rail should also be subject to a road user charge based on emissions, but in the short term incentivising the capital costs of cleaner transport does make sense, and it may be as far as the three parties could agree. I expect sales of gas guzzlers to spike upwards and of electric and hybrids to drop until the policy is implemented – how quickly can the coalition get it through will be interesting.

    • Sacha 17.1

      Not only do heavy trucks damage roads, but they hugely increase the construction costs to cope with them. They pay for only a fraction of that extra cost.

      • KJT 17.1.1

        Seen various estimates, but it is clear that trucks pay less than 40% of their true costs.

        • Sacha 17.1.1.1

          That's the maintenance costs. Initial construction ones less often talked about.

          • KJT 17.1.1.1.1

            Yes. I suspect construction costs are at least 4 times higher given the average wheel loadings.

    • mac1 17.2

      What the CEO of Pulse Energy argued was that the meeting point where electricity and oil-based fuel prices converge has already happened. Oil based fuels are now more expensive , and will continue to become more so.

      It is cheaper for me to run an EV in terms of fuel costs now. Mine is currently plugged into my solar panels on a sunny wintry day getting a recharge. With solar panels, even with an EV, I use less power from the grid now. That is an answer to the naysayers who argue that more EVs will overload the grid.

      I am about to make a decision as to whether I spend $4000 to replace a small wood burning chip heater that heats hot water or use that $4000 to install another 4-5 panels on the roof and generate another 2000 kw/hrs for car and daytime house consumption. I have yet to do the figures/considerations for that.

      If there is to be a road user charge for EVs it would have to be based on time on the road which is roughly what a fuel based user charge system does. I do not know how they can figure that out without some milage based system and I bet the smart boys would easily figure out a way to circumvent that.

      A flat charge would penalise owners of low use EVs, especially if the current range restrictions on EVs is not ameliorated. Even so, for a retired person, stopping for a half hour break every 150 kms or so is not a huge inconvenience, but many cite range as a primary consideration for not having an EV.

  17. Booker 18

    Just thought I should chip in on the real benefit here: health.

    As a health researcher it saddens me that the EV discussion is always about climate change. Although environmental impacts are a medium to long term effect of internal combustion engines, they also have health impacts which cover the full range of immediate, short term to long term effects. The more research is done the worse the picture gets too. Even if climate change was completely non-existent we’d still have an enormous mandate to ditch ICE-powered vehicles for electric, especially in populated areas.

    These kind of price incentives are exactly what we need.

  18. David Mac 19

    The uptake of EVs need not make our journey to 100% sustainable electricity that much steeper. Generally I wouldn't care if my EV is only charging when grid demands are at their lowest. I could press a 'Charge Now' button on those occasions I needed a fast top-up.

  19. Sacha 20

    Govt's plans are far from bold, says I/S: http://norightturn.blogspot.com/2019/07/climate-change-timid-and-unambitious.html

    The ice-caps are melting, cities are running out of water, and the government is planning to apply a vehicle fuel efficiency standard Japan and Europe had five years ago in 2025?

    They should be pushing this through the legislative process as quickly as possible, and implementing it immediately, rather than with a 5-year phase-in. As the Cabinet paper points out, a dirty car imported today stays on our roads for 19 years on average. So the quicker we turn off that tap, the better. But more importantly, we need to turn it off permanently.

    Yet the proposal does not do that. Submissions ahoy.

    • Peter Christchurh nz 20.1

      My submission:

      Tax the old dirty vehicles off the road.

      I despair everytime I drive behind a smoke spewing old dunger, invariably with a Greenpeace or Save the Whales sticker on the rear window.

      And yes, bring in meaningful penalty taxes on new gas guzzlers and 4wd killer cars now. Along with meaningful subsidies for EV now.

  20. Ken 21

    If you pollute, you should pay.

  21. Carbon neutral?

    How can that be when all life on earth is carbon based?

    Get off the grass and grow more trees !

    Bloody townies!

    Levon Helm "Poor Old Dirt Farmer" Official Music Video – YouTube

  22. Sanctuary 23

    LOL Pullya Benefit is on Natrad now criticising the government for "punishing people who don't have alternatives".

    F**king hypocritical much? Punish beneficiaries with no choices but bend over and take it up the ass from your buddies at federated farmers – typical National.

    Then saying they agree with the need to combat global change, but typically bitching about anything that actually does anything at all about dealing with it if it stops greedy assholes who vote National making a buck in the short term.

    • michelle 23.1

      Sanctuary we all know pull the benefit speaks through a hole in her backside i laugh when i hear her she is as toxic as the stuff coming out of our cows bums

  23. michelle 24

    I think this is a good idea from the Greens that needs more work this is the type of policy i would like to see more of this type of thinking from the Greens. And they need to keep on the water bandwagon its a very important issue for us.

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