A new £35 million funding package for electric car drivers has been announced by Transport Minister John Hayes, which looks to increase the amount of workplace and on-street EV charge points available.
As part of the UK Government’s £600 million investment in ultra low emission vehicles (ULEVs), the new funding will see up to £10 million assigned for charge points at workplaces, and for homes with no off-street parking available
The news also sees support of £3.75 million to encourage the uptake of zero-emission motorcycles and scooters, £2 million for public and private sector organisations to deploy hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, and the next stage of a £20 million competition for councils to roll-out charge points for plug-in taxis.
The government is also buying two new Nissan Leafs for the Government Car Service – adding to the four already in use – while the announcement was part of a new plan to improve air quality by introducing clean air zones in Birmingham, Leeds, Nottingham, Derby, and Southampton by 2020.
At the announcement John Hayes said: “No matter what mode of transport you need – a scooter to get to work, a car or a van to run your business – we are here to help you do it with zero emissions. The number of ultra-low emission vehicles on our roads are at record levels and new registrations have risen by 250 per cent in just over two years.
“We are committing £35 million to help install new charge points and offer new grants as we aim for nearly all cars and vans on our roads to be zero emission by 2050.”
A £7.5 million workplace charging scheme, due to be launched this autumn, will be open to eligible private and public sector workplaces in the UK to support the installation of charging infrastructure for their staff and fleet use.
The vast majority of electric car owners charge their vehicles at home – which is not always practical for people without driveways. A further £2.5 million is being made available to councils who commit to installing charge points on streets near homes without private off-street parking.
In addition, an initial £3.75 million is being made available for motorcycle and scooter riders who want to want to go green, providing them with up to 20 per cent off the cost of an electric motorcycle or scooter. Buyers will be able to claim a maximum discount of £1,500.
The winners of the hydrogen fuel cell vehicles fleet competition will also be announced shortly. Fourteen public and private sector fleets from around the country – including city councils, emergency authorities, car hire firms and the Science Museum – will receive a share of £2 million for a total of 50 hydrogen-fuelled cars and vans, more than doubling the number of these types of vehicles on UK’s roads.