Local authorities including Brighton and Manchester will install more than 300 car charging points using government funding – but they will only be accessible for taxis.
Announced at the Smart Transport conference by future of mobility minister Jesse Norman, more than £6m investment will fund almost 300 ‘rapid’ chargers – 50kW and up – and 46 ‘fast’ chargers for ultra-low emission taxis. They will be installed in 17 local authorities, also including Leicester and the north-east.
“The government wants all new cars and vans to be effectively zero emission by 2040. Getting the right infrastructure and investment in place is a crucial part of this,” said Norman.
“Today’s funding will support almost 4,000 ultra low emission vehicles across the country. It is a further sign that the UK is making real progress in the transition to greener transport.”
The government estimated that more than 800 ultra-low emission black cabs and more than 3,000 ultra-low emission private hire vehicles will benefit from the new charging points.
“These new charge points for greener taxis will help accelerate a cleaner environment for people across the UK,” said automotive minister Richard Harrington. “This will also point the way for a better, healthier future for us all as part of the government’s modern industrial strategy, which builds on the government’s long-standing partnership with the UK automotive sector.”
Asked why the charging points will not be accessible to the public, a spokeswoman for the Department for Transport told Professional Engineering that the funding runs alongside other schemes providing local authorities with money for public charge points.
There are more than 15,000 public charge points for about 170,000 ultra-low emission vehicles, the department said, including 1,500 rapid chargers. Studies show the “vast majority” of drivers charge at home, the department added, with roughly 30-times as many ‘charging events’ under the Office for Low Emission Vehicle’s home charging scheme than under its public sector scheme in 2017.
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