Originally published on Gas2.
Those wanting to lead the world to a cleaner future and drive on electricity in London are getting another boost.
“Ultra low-emission vehicles” (basically, electric cars) are getting a further reduction in London’s congestion charge, and taxi drivers with cars >10 years of age can get a decommissioning grant to drop their polluters and go electric. Of course, part of the impetus for these new incentives is to clean London’s filthy air, and part is to help combat climate change. The plan, unveiled by Mayor Boris Johnson on Wednesday (July 22), also includes the installation of more EV charging stations.
“The plans could even lead to the introduction of preferential access and lower parking charges for ULEV vehicles in some parts of London,” The Independent reports. “The Mayor’s Office has said it will “explore” this idea, and will work with London’s boroughs to develop it.”
If you think air pollution is a joke, take a look at this stat: “9,500 Londoners died early in 2010 because of pollution.” There is actually no quantifying that, nor the suffering at the end of those people’s lives.
Unfortunately, I’m not finding any details on the Transport for London website about the actual value of the taxi decommissioning grants or the reduced congestion charges. If anyone finds those, drop me a line and I’ll update this article.
This is the most recent of many steps London and the UK as a whole have been implementing to encourage electric vehicle adoption, which has been rising very fast in the past year — 350%. London recently signed a deal to get 50 more electric buses running in the city, and it has also adopted 98 MPG range-extended Metrocabs. UK electric car grants go up to £5,000, and it also offers grants for home charging stations.
Kudos to London and the UK, but let’s keep going! There’s a long way to go to catch up with Norway!