THE Government should end the sale of petrol and diesel cars five years earlier than currently proposed to help speed up the switch to electric vehicles power giant SSE has said.

The Scottish Hydroelectric owner said bringing forward the ban to 2030 from 2035 would help accelerate the decarbonisation of transport that will be required if the UK Government is to achieve its net zero emissions target.

The proposal is one of a range of measures proposed by SSE in what it called a Greenprint for how the Government could help the economy recover from the damage caused by the coronavirus.

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It reckons that investment in support of the energy transition could provide a vital boost to growth while helping to tackle climate change.

Chief executive Alistair Phillips-Davies said: “Low-carbon investment is a win-win: providing a vital economic boost, creating skilled, sustainable jobs in all UK regions to support a just transition, improving air quality and building our resilience while also driving progress towards our climate change targets.”

The Greenprint includes proposals that are intended to help unlock private sector investment at a time when the public finances are set to come under huge pressure as a result of the impact of the coronavirus.

These focus on the development of a net zero power generation system and related transmission networks; the decarbonisation of industrial activity; electric vehicles and green buildings.

SSE noted it is ready to invest to invest billions in networks with the right support from the regulator.

Read more: SSE to invest billions in Scottish transmission networks amid shift to renewables

Other proposals cover areas such as the use of carbon pricing to encourage investment in power generation facilities that would produce lower emissions than some existing alternatives.

SSE said: “A green fiscal rule which properly puts a high price on carbon emissions will incentivise the switch to cleaner power. And making homes more energy efficient with electric heat networks and a deadline for the demise of the gas boiler is needed to hit net zero targets.”

In February the UK Government launched a consultation on a plan to bring forward the sale of new petrol, diesel and hybrid cars and vans from 2040 to 2035, or earlier if a faster transition appears feasible.

The consultation closes on July 31.