There are also issues around generating the electricity to power the cars that must be overcome; creating it via fossil fuel burning power stations still results in substantial air pollution.
"We cannot continue to use diesel and gasoline cars, not only because of the health problems they pose but also because their emissions mean accelerating climate change, harming our planet and the next generation, "Said Environment Minister Michael Gove on BBC Radio 4".
It follows a similar announcement earlier in July by the French Government, while German cities including Stuttgart and Munich have also said they are considering banning some diesel vehicles. But that higher up-front cost is still now a barrier to more people investing in electric cars.
In 2017 around 4 percent of all new vehicle sales have been hybrids, plug-in hybrids or fully electric, with around a quarter of that figure sales of fully electric cars.
"Looking to phase out petrol and diesel cars is the sensible thing to do rather than a total ban". Audi, Mercedes-Benz, Volvo, and others have promised more so-called 48-volt "mild hybrids", which use small electric motors in tandem with internal-combustion engines.
Diesel-powered cars-which pollute more Nitrogen Oxide than their gas powered counterparts-are already on their way out, and many automakers are stepping up their hybridization efforts.
Oil tanker owners end strike, bringing halt to panic buying
He said no one would be allowed to blackmail the authorities. "The owners of oil tankers should come and talk to us". The incident occurred when an oil tanker, which had overturned, exploded near Ahmedpur East Tehsil in Bahawalpur.
The plans would set aside £1 billion for ultra-low emissions vehicles, including £100 million for public electric charging infrastructure and plug-in auto grants, and £290 million has been earmarked for retrofitting old public transport and propping up sales of hybrid taxis.
But others are in favor of Germany taking action more rapidly, with a member of Merkel's Christian Democrats saying the country should start phasing out petrol and diesel soon.
By 2030, Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) estimates that one in 12 cars sold in the United Kingdom will be electric from one in 200 today. It's powered by a single 152bhp electric motor and can travel for up to 400 miles between refills.
"This is a cynical move by the government to grab the headlines by announcing changes for 23 years' time and failing to enact measures which will curb pollution in United Kingdom towns and cities now", said Oliver Hayes, Friends of the Earth air pollution campaigner.
"Diesel drivers are not to blame and, to help them switch to cleaner vehicles, the government will consult on a targeted scrappage scheme, one of a number of measures to support motorists affected by local plans", a government spokesman said. "To close the gap to 100 percent, we'll need to see much greater investments in charging infrastructure, to make sure people have somewhere to plug in".
"Currently demand for alternatively fuelled vehicles is growing but still at a very low level as consumers have concerns over affordability, range and charging points".