Councils offered low emission taxi funding

Local authorities are being offered a share of up to £6 million in funding to establish charging points for use by low emission taxis.

The funding is the second phase of a total £20 million investment by the government aimed at improving the available infrastructure for low emission taxis. Ten authorities have already received funding through the initiative.

Availability of charging infrastructure is likely to be crucial in the take-up of electric-enabled taxis

Launch of the second phase of the ‘Ultra Low Emission Taxi Infrastructure Scheme’ comes on the same day that the Department for Transport unveiled its Road to Zero strategy setting out a series of policies aimed at accelerating the uptake of low emission transport (see airqualitynews.com story).

Within the latest phase of the funding scheme, government has sought to make it easier for local authorities to have success in bidding for funds, and has said that they will not be required to submit feasibility studies alongside their bids.

However, applications will need to demonstrate that ‘robust research and planning’ has gone into the process.

This is the latest in a series of measures aimed at stimulating the market for low emission taxis.

Incentives

In March, the Treasury announced that the vehicles would be exempt from paying Vehicle Excise Duty (see airqualitynews.com story).

Among the vehicles available on the market is the TX eCity model developed by the London Electric Vehicle Company (LEVC).

The vehicle, launched this year, is powered by a battery electric powertrain with a 1.3 litre petrol engine, made by Volvo. The technology allows for a range of over 400 miles including over 70 miles range with zero emissions.

Commenting on the Road to Zero Strategy today, Chris Gubbey, chief executive of LEVC said: “The rapid move towards electric vehicles is driven by the desire of Governments around the world to tackle the global air quality crisis and lead the development of future technologies.

“By setting ambitious 2030 and 2040 targets on electric vehicle sales the UK government will ensure that our country remains a leading developer and manufacturer of electric vehicles. The government has listened to industry’s call to support this transition through a package of infrastructure provision and vehicle grants to ensure the transition can be consumer lead.”

“The pace of the electrification of road transport around the world is nothing short of extraordinary. Ultimately, a bold strategy will ensure that the world’s electrification revolution is made in the UK.”

Related Links
Ultra Low Emission Taxi Infrastructure Scheme – Details