A Dutch initiative calling for all new buses and trucks to be emission-free from 2040 was well received at the COP26 climate conference in Glasgow. So far, 15 countries have pledged their support.
15 countries pledge support for Dutch initiative at COP26
AT COP26, world leaders, negotiators, government representatives, businesses, and citizens have come together to discuss the fight against climate change. Various policies are being put forward, with the end goal of cutting emissions by 2030 and limiting global warming to 1,5 degrees.
A policy put forward by the Netherlands this week calls on nations to make the switch to clean heavy vehicles. The initiative states that, from 2040, all new trucks and buses on the roads will be emission-free. The Dutch government expects this move will play a significant role in meeting the global zero-emission target for trucks and buses by 2050.
Alongside the Netherlands, Austria, Canada, Chile, Denmark, Finland, Luxembourg, New Zealand, Norway, Scotland, Turkey, Uruguay, the United Kingdom, Wales and Switzerland have committed to the plans. Various international companies, including IKEA and Amazon, have also joined the pledge. Dutch Minister for Infrastructure and Water Management, Steven van Weyenberg, said it was a good start, and called the initiative an ambitious but important step.
The Netherlands’ new climate commitments
Earlier this week, the Netherlands voted in support of a policy put forward by the UK, which called for countries to bring an end to government investments in international fossil fuel projects. While Prime Minister Mark Rutte and the Dutch delegation had initially made it clear they would not be a part of the coalition making this significant commitment, criticism from MPs in the House of Representatives (Tweede Kamer) resulted in a quick U-turn.
By supporting the UK proposal, the Netherlands has committed to ending direct investments in the international coal, gas, and oil industries before the end of 2022. While the Netherlands is a fairly small country, it plays a significant role in financing the international fossil fuel industry.
Dutch Finance Minister Hans Vijlbrief said the decision signified “a big step in the right direction to combat climate change.” The Netherlands has also committed to cutting methane emissions by 30 percent and ending deforestation by 2030.