THE UK and Scottish Governments are being urged to protect motorists from “punitive clean air measures” set to be introduced across the country.

Conservative MP Kirstene Hair, who chairs the FairFuel UK all-party parliamentary group, has written to both Chris Grayling, the UK Transport Secretary, and Michael Matheson, his Scottish counterpart, urging them to take steps to ensure commuters are not unduly punished by the new regime.

She wants them to look at options for introducing an incentive scheme for fuel converters, which would allow motorists to reduce their vehicle’s emissions.

Ms Hair, who represents Angus, pointed to the example set in Germany where the Government and motor industry jointly funded retrofitting diesel vehicles, which initially prioritised areas where low emissions targets were being introduced.

The SNP Government recently set out plans to introduce low emission zones, which, she pointed out, would ban thousands of vehicles from cities such as Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee and Aberdeen.

“With low emission zones set to be introduced as early as 2020, we need the both the UK and Scottish Governments to work with the motor industry to give drivers the option of lowering their emissions through a retrofitting scheme to avoid being punished by new regulations,” said Ms Hair.

“We know this can be done and it is delivering real results in Germany where high-emission diesel cars are retrofitted with emission reduction technology to reduce their environmental impact.

“It is right that we take steps to protect our environment but that cannot come at the expense of motorists, who are already facing increased costs and for who further punitive measures would be deeply damaging,” she added.