Government announces new measures to boost UK’s switch to electric vehicles

Government announces new measures to boost UK’s switch to electric vehicles
The Government has announced a series of new measures that will support the shift to electric vehicles (EVs) as part of the wider plans to transition towards a net zero future.

With the goal of decarbonising the transport sector, a new £381 million Local Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (LEVI) fund has been introduced, alongside an additional £15 million for the On-Street Residential Charging Scheme (ORCS).

The funding will support the installation of tens of thousands of new chargers across the country, increasing EV infrastructure across the UK.

One of the biggest criticisms the Government have faced in recent years has been the lack of available chargepoints for those who have looked to make the switch to EVs.

This new plan has the aim to change this, and aid in the switch to a ‘greener future’.

Transport Secretary Mark Harper said: “Transport is one of the most important sectors for achieving net zero by 2050 and so we must accelerate our efforts to decarbonise how people get from A to B, while growing our economy and supporting thousands of green jobs.”

Alongside the funding, the Government has unveiled new proposals for a zero emission vehicle mandate.

From 2024, parliament will set minimum annual targets for the percentage of new car and van sales that must be zero emission.

This week’s announcement continues the progress already made in the transition to electric vehicles, with almost 17% of new cars sold last year being zero emission.

Technology and Decarbonisation Minister Jesse Norman said: “The government is doing more than ever to help the UK move away from petrol and diesel and towards electric vehicles.

“That means investing in charging infrastructure and giving a clear direction to manufacturers, so they can roll out new electric vehicles faster and more efficiently. Overall, the UK is leading the way in decarbonising transport, a sector that is one of the biggest contributors to greenhouse gases.”

These latest announcements support the Government’s commitment to end the sale of petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2030 – and from 2035, all new vehicles must be fully zero-emission.

Following the announcement, RAC electric vehicles spokesman Simon Williams said: “Extra funding for charging infrastructure is welcome as we know around a third of all homes in the UK don’t have a driveway for a chargepoint to be installed, which makes switching to an electric vehicle less straightforward.

“With the Government imposing a mandate for zero-emission vehicle sales on manufacturers, it seems logical that this should be matched by targets for local authorities and charging networks to install a certain number of chargepoints, to meet demand from the expected increase in electric vehicles on the road.”

Are you looking to make the switch to EVs? What more can the Government do to make EVs more appealing to the public? Leave your comments below.

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