The Government has pledged a further £290m to support the development of low emission vehicles, in particular buses and taxis.
Announced yesterday (29 Nov), the Government says the funding reiterates it commitment to reduce carbon emissions from transport, describing it as a ‘major step’ towards its aim for nearly all cars and vans to be zero emission by 2050.
The funding will be split among a number of projects, the largest of which will see £150m invested in cleaner buses and taxis. This will include putting new, less polluting buses on the road as well as retrofitting engines to reduce nitrogen oxide (NOₓ) emissions.
A second project, given £80m, is designed to improve charging infrastructure for electric vehicle owners. The Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS) is now open for applications.
£20m has been pledged for the Advanced Renewable Fuel Demonstration Competition. The project will provide grant funding, matched by the private sector, to build demonstration-scale advanced renewable fuel plants in the UK, specifically targeting the decarbonisation of lorries and planes.
The Government has also confirmed that a further £100m has been invested to support plans to develop and test connected and driverless vehicle technology.
Chris Grayling, transport secretary, said: “We are absolutely determined to reduce carbon emissions from transport as part of our ongoing commitment to tackle climate change.
“This government is committed to improving air quality and reducing pollution in towns and cities, which is essential for people’s health and the environment.
“We are already making headway through our investment in low emission vehicles, greener public transport and walking and cycling, as well as grants for innovative advanced biofuels projects.”
Poppy Welch, head of Go Ultra Low, the government and industry campaign designed to increase purchase consideration of electric vehicles, said: “The £80m investment in charging infrastructure is vital as growth in the UK electric car market continues to accelerate.
“This is fantastic news for motorists and the continuation of incentives for plug-in vehicles through company tax and salary sacrifice schemes will give thousands more people the option of choosing the very lowest emitting cars and allow more businesses to benefit from adding electric vehicles to their fleets.”