New calls for central government and local authorities to ‘think hard’ and look at the facts have been made following studies showing a negative impact of diesel emissions on urban air quality.
Rupert Pontin, head of valuations, said that while some older diesel vehicles undoubtedly pump out too much nitrogen oxide and other potentially harmful substances, those that meet the latest emissions standards are virtually as clean as petrol.
He said: “The science appears to be very robust.
“However, they are reporting an historic picture.
“The latest diesel emissions standards are very stringent and newer vehicles are unlikely to have the same kind of impact on the air that we breathe.”
Car sales figures showed that a general trend is already underway, seeing hybrids and other alternative fuel vehicles taking market share away from diesel.
Pontin warns that we are potentially engineering a move away from diesel without looking at all of the facts.
He added: “It is important to remember that the growth of diesel across the last decade and longer has been as a direct result of policies designed to encourage its use thanks to a lower CO2 profile.
“One could say that our poor air quality in cities is arguably a direct result of previous Government intervention.”