The UK government has awarded more than £6 million to install charge points for ultra-low emission taxis across the country.
Announced on 5 February at the Smart Transport Conference in London, the funding will pay for the installation of 300 rapid charge points and 46 fast charge points in 17 local authorities including Greater Manchester, Brighton and Leicester.
The announcement marks part of the government’s “Road to Zero” strategy, which sets out measures to phase out diesel and petrol cars and vans in favour of low emission vehicles by 2030.
The government estimates around 800 ultra-low emission black cabs and 3,000 ultra-low emissions private hire vehicles will benefit from the funding and charge points.
Minister of state for transport Jesse Norman MP told Power Technology: “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.
“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.”
Automotive minister Richard Harrington added: “The UK has led the world in cutting emissions while maintaining growth in our economy.”
He told Business Green: “These new charge points for greener taxis will help accelerate a cleaner environment for people across the UK. 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.”
Projects being funded include Transport for Greater Manchester's plan to install chargepoints at Manchester Airport's Taxi Feeder Park, plans to create hubs for ultra-low emission taxi charging in strategic locations across Leicester, and new charging arrays in Brighton and Hove and the North East.
The move follows a similar £14m funding award last March, which supported the rollout of 389 rapid and 143 fast chargepoints.
A petition calling for Erewash cabbies to be allowed to have fully-tinted windows in their taxis has been rejected over fears that vehicles could be used to enable the abuse of vulnerable children and adults.