LONDON—The U.K.’s government says it will ban the sale of new cars and vans using diesel and gasoline starting in 2040 as authorities move to tackle air pollution.
The decision announced Wednesday by Environment Secretary Michael Gove follows similar moves in France and Norway. It also comes as the technology for electric cars improves.
Gove told the BBC that “there is no alternative to embracing new technology.”
Britain’s government is expected to announce a 255 million pound (CA$417 million) fund to help local communities address diesel pollution. The measures are part of a clean air strategy authorities are due to publish Wednesday, only days before a deadline mandated by the High Court.
Campaigners want the final plans to have government-funded and mandated clean air zones, together with a diesel scrappage scheme.
The news comes two years after Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo announced a plan to ban most diesel vehicles from the French capital by 2020, a measure which targeted diesel buses and trucks, diesel vehicles made before 2011 and motorcycles made before 2000.
The French government took the 2015 measures a step further by announcing earlier this month a plan to ban all gas and diesel vehicles from the country by 2040.
The U.K. is now following France’s lead.
The island nation’s commitment to cleaner air has been steadfast, as back in April Britain recorded its first day without using coal power since the 19th century.