What is vehicle emissions tax?

vehicle emissionsIt has been recognised for some time now that the emissions from cars and lorries is an issue for the environment.

Several studies have taken place to determine the different emissions that come from motor vehicles, especially those with internal combustion engines. These studies have taken place because in the 1950s and 1960s the penny dropped that air pollution caused by traffic on the road was a risk to health and could not be left to get worse and worse as people started to invest in bigger cars and drive more often than before.

Originally investigated in the United States, early examinations gave rise to controls being put in place to monitor vehicle emissions. But, like many things in the US, the strictness of the control varied from state to state and were pretty much ignored. It was only in 1970 when the US Environmental Protection Agency took up the baton that things began to be taken more seriously. By 1974, the real risk of hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide and nitogen oxides amongst other compounds were known and it was accepted that they were likely to have a seriously detrimental effect on short and long-term health.

Respiratory diseases and cancers are just two of the negative health effects of vehicle emissions, so it’s clear that while the government in any country in the world benefits from a nice revenue from selling fuel, they have a subsequent cost risk on the health side of the equation. It is for this reason, together with the greater awareness that the long term effect on the planet simply can’t be ignored that governments across the world have sat up and started to pay attention to vehicle emissions, particularly in recent years.

In Europe, the EU member states are governed by the rules set out by the overall community, but many countries have decided to enforce stricter rules in order to improve their country’s performance when it comes to reducing emissions. Such countries are being recognised on the global platform as being leaders in the journey to a greener planet.

In North America, there are several different bodies that oversee the control of vehicle emissions and create policy to discourage pollution. In the UK, in line with many other such issues, there are three different agencies that take charge of vehicle emissions. They are the Environment Agency, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency and the Department of the Environment. These departments operate in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland respectively. That said, the Department of the Environment Food and Rural Affairs takes an overall view for the whole country and liaises closely with Europe on the subject.

So how do governments across the world deter people from allowing vehicles to emit unacceptable levels of harmful substances? Like most other things, they apply a tax to vehicles according to their engine size and their CO2 emissions. This tax is called vehicle emissions tax. Vehicle emissions tax often takes into account the year of registration of a car as well as the engine size and CO2 emission on the basis that cars manufactured in more recent years have made attempts to control emissions more effectively than before.

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