Paul Minto, Energy partner, comments on the announcement that the Government has published a clean air strategy.
"Air quality is becoming increasingly a focus in the UK and this announcement, which builds on the Conservative manifesto commitment for almost every car and van to be zero emission by 2050, shows how seriously the Government is taking it.
This will give car manufacturers confidence that the market for electric vehicles is going to grow exponentially over the next few years, and the recent commitments from Volvo that all new cars from 2019 will have an electric motor and from BMW that the new electric Mini will be built in the UK show this is starting to happen.
National Grid in their recent Future Energy Scenarios document also predict a steep rise in the number of electric vehicles and are planning how the grid will cope. This will depend on when people choose to charge their cars and the government needs to incentivise them to charge outside of peak demand times. One way to do this is by taxing the electricity used as a transport fuel – something we haven't heard much about yet, but which needs considering given the loss of tax revenue from petrol and diesel.
The new Automated and Electric Vehicles Bill, to be introduced this autumn, will give the government power to require each major fuel station to have an electric vehicle chargepoint and also to make those chargepoints "smart" so that electric vehicles can give power back to the grid when needed.
These are exciting developments and signal the start of a radical change in both the energy and transport industries".
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