The HGV levy is about the physical damage HGVs do to the roads. It is not an environmental policy and does not lend itself to sending an environmental message or influencing purchasing decisions. Tinkering with the levy won’t get operators to switch unless they have a satisfactory and affordable alternative, with adequate performance characteristics and infrastructure provision.
The proposed change has minimal impact and goes against the polluter pays principle. The first phase of changes results in a less cost-reflective set of charges, and the envisaged adjustments to cater for zero tailpipe HGVs will exacerbate this further. There are far more effective policies for targeting the environmental performance of HGVs, and far more important priorities for the Department for Transport.
Click to download RTFA response to the HGV levy