UK Coalition calls for faster EV transition

Posted: 15 July 2020 |

A Coalition of organisations has called on the UK Government to bring the electric vehicle (EV) sales target forward and to strengthen the nation’s charging network.

UK Coalition calls for faster EV transition

The UK Electric Fleets Coalition, run by international non-profit The Climate Group, in partnership with founding member, BT Group – including Openreach – has called on the UK Government to target 100 per cent electric vehicle (EV) sales by 2030 (cars and vans).

The 21 members of the Coalition collectively operate over 400,000 cars and vans in the UK. The businesses are Anglian Water, BT, Centrica, DPD UK, ENGIE, Fleet Alliance, Foxtons, Hitachi Capital UK, Iberdrola (Scottish Power), Ingka Group (IKEA), LeasePlan, Mawdsleys, Mitie, Natwest Group, Octopus, Openreach, Orsted, OVO Energy, Severn Trent, Tusker and Unilever.

Globally, the 77 members of The Climate Group’s EV100 initiative have committed to switch over 4.5 million vehicles to zero emissions and install EV charging at over 3,000 company locations by 2030.

As the UK Government outlines plans to build back better from the COVID-19 crisis, and consults on bringing forward the UK’s EV switchover to 2035, or earlier if feasible, the Coalition has recommended a comprehensive package of measures to boost the EV business case, stimulate EV manufacturing and strengthen the charging network. They include:

  • Set a 2030 target: 100 per cent of new car and van sales to be fully electric by 2030 (with exceptions for the small number of vehicles where this may not be possible)
  • Stimulate supply to meet business demand: Introduce a zero-emission vehicle mandate to require vehicle manufacturers to produce an annually increasing percentage of zero-emission vehicles
  • Drive demand: Extend grants for electric vehicles and charging points through to at least 2022, when EVs are expected to start competing on price with conventional vehicles
  • Invest in infrastructure: Speed up the rollout of public charge-points across the UK for use by any payment system.

Helen Clarkson, CEO of The Climate Group, said: “We need to build back better from the COVID-19 crisis as we look ahead to next year’s COP26 climate summit. Scaling up EV manufacturing and the nationwide charge point network are both huge opportunities for jobs and growth in the UK. Businesses are making the switch themselves through our EV100 initiative and now they are coming together with a clear message to government: match our ambition and help us move to clean electric transport.”

Philip Jansen, BT Group Chief Executive, added: “We have an outstanding record in reducing carbon emissions and have plans to be a net zero emissions business by 2045. The switch to low and zero emissions vehicles is a key element in our carbon strategy and it’s great to see so many businesses coming on board to work towards a more sustainable, resilient, low carbon future.”