Councils and taxi trade offered guidance on low emission models

Councils and the taxi trade have been offered guidance on the latest low emission technologies, infrastructure and policy options available to speed up the adoption of cleaner taxis.

The ‘Low Emission Taxi Guide’, published on Friday by the Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership (LowCVP) and Energy Saving Trust (EST) aims to support efforts to improve air quality in towns and cities.

A passenger boards the TX eCity – one of the newest zero-emission capable taxi models on the market

It has been published to coincide with Friday’s direction from Defra on action to address air pollution across 33 local authorities.

According to LowCVP the average age of a traditional black cab in the UK is now 12 years and the higher emissions from these vehicles is increasingly being targeted in efforts to improve air quality.

The organisation says that the new provides details on how to best speed-up the adoption of ultra-clean taxi and private hire vehicles.

With an estimated 290,000 licenced taxi and private hire vehicles across England and Wales and 23,000 in Scotland, encouraging the switch to ‘new low emission alternatives within our city centres is an important part of plans to improve air quality and cut greenhouse gas emissions’, LowCVP says.

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The Low Emission Taxi Guide – is available to download for free from www.lowcvp.org.uk/taxiguide – and is aimed at both local authorities and the taxi and private hire vehicle drivers themselves.

For local authorities wishing to reduce road transport emissions the document provides guidance on implementing best practice policy measures, initiatives and incentives to accelerate the take up of clean and low carbon vehicles to help comply with legal air quality standards.

It also includes details of the latest low emission vehicle technologies and fuels, plus policy case studies and an overview of the national measures in place to reduce road transport emissions.

LowCVP will be running a Low Emission Taxi Guide webinar in November and face-to-face workshop in early 2019 to provide additional information.

LowCVP’s head of projects, Gloria Esposito, said: “Our current fleet of ageing taxis and private hire vehicles risks holding back the efforts to improve air quality.

“Accelerating the introduction of low emission taxis is a great opportunity to help clean up urban air, particularly in congested high traffic areas, while supporting innovative UK industries. This guide complements our low emission bus and van guides and is designed to help local authorities and drivers understand the best ways to make this change happen.

“As clean air zones are introduced, low emission taxis will provide a highly effective and ultra-clean transport solution for the widest variety of users and can play a major role in a truly low emission transport system.”

Matthew Eastwood, Head of Transport at Energy Saving Trust (EST), said: “The Low Emission Taxi Guide is the most comprehensive on the subject, providing best practice guidance that looks at the latest low carbon transport technologies and the infrastructure required to fuel them. This valuable resource supports the adoption of low carbon taxi and private hire vehicles, contributing to cleaner air in our towns and cities.”