Technical regulations that are indeed very technical
LACK OF KNOWLEDGE IS GEOGRAPHICALLY DEPENDENT
As we have already seen, confusion and scepticism reign on the topic of LEZs, regarding both their existence and their implications. The same is true of engine regulations and possibly even more so.
Opinion is split almost equally between those who say they are aware of the ban on the sale of combustion engine vehicles as of 2035 and those who are not. European countries, where manufacturers have lobbied hard against these regulations, are home to the largest number of motorists who have knowledge of these measures. Germany tops the list, with the highest proportion of individuals who bemoan such regulations. The level of knowledge is lowest in Mexico and Japan, where 7 out of 10 people are unaware of these measures. Turkey, the United States, China and France rank somewhere in the middle (Fig. 14).
A REJECTION OF ENGINE REGULATIONS
In keeping with their contrasting opinions on LEZs, motorists express similarly contradictory views when it comes to regulations for internal combustion vehicles.
More than 6 out of 10 people believe that these measures are sound, but 1 in 2 consider them insufficient. Like in the case of LEZs, the Turks, Mexicans and Chinese, but also the Portuguese, say that they are justified. Even a significant majority of Americans extol the virtues of such regulations. A large bloc of European countries – albeit one that excludes Spain, Portugal and Italy – disapprove of them, spearheaded by France.
As with LEZs, the main criticism is that the regulations will not affect everyone in equal measure, but will have a greater impact on certain individuals and families. 8 out of 10 people state that households would be the first to suffer if they were unable to sell their internal combustion vehicle, which would make it impossible for them to get around. Once again, it is in France, but also in Belgium, that this sense of injustice is most keenly felt.
Although the most coercive measures, at least in Europe, are not set to come into force until 2035, 7 out of 10 motorists feel that the timetable for their implementation is too tight. The French and Belgians, once again, criticise the brevity of this timeframe, with the Spanish being similarly disparaging (Fig. 15).
These attitudes are emerging in a context where some European governments, and not just carmakers, are calling for a postponement of the zero-CO2 emissions deadline. This does nothing but add to people’s hesitation and thicken the prevailing fog.
Similarly, 6 out of 10 respondents point to both the unrealistic nature of engine regulations and their ineffectiveness in combatting pollution. As ever, the French and Belgians are the most likely to express this view, but the Poles are equally as vehement.
One sign that not everything is clear in the minds of motorists, however, is the fact that half of them feel that this type of measure is insufficient, with the Turks, Chinese and Italians in particular stating this opinion. Naturally, the Belgians are not particularly concerned about this, much like their Dutch neighbours (Fig. 16).