The Government are committed to reducing carbon and other emissions from all sectors including road transport. As part of our overall strategy, we are supporting a number of measures to promote the increased use of low-carbon vehicles including electric cars. Details can be found on the website of the Office for Low Emission Vehicles at http://www.dft.gov.uk/pgr/sustainable/olev/. The main measures are:
since 1 January 2011 motorists purchasing a qualifying ultra-low emission car are eligible to receive a grant of 25 per cent towards the cost of the vehicle, up to a maximum of £5,000 under the plug-in car grant (PICG) scheme. As of 31 March 2011, 465 cars had been ordered through the PICG;we are also committed to mandating a national recharging network for electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles, and will be publishing an electric vehicle infrastructure strategy this summer. The plugged-in places (PIP) programme provides match-funding to local consortia of businesses and public sector partners to encourage installation of the recharging infrastructure needed to support use of electric vehicles. This will give investors and consumers confidence in the provision of charging facilities in the UK and remove an important barrier to the wider uptake of electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles. Learning from the programme will feed into the infrastructure strategy; the Government are also funding a programme of research and development work to support the ongoing progression of this new generation of vehicles; and the department has paid £46.8 million to local authorities and bus operators to assist them in purchasing 526 hybrid-electric and 16 all-electric buses. More details are available on the DfT website: http://www.dft.gov.uk/pgr/regional/buses/greenbusfund/greenbusfundbusdetails/.