Transport for London (TfL) added four Mitsubishi i-MiEVs into its fleet as part of Mayor Boris Johnson’s plans to make London the electric vehicle capital of Europe. The four i-MiEVs, part funded by the Government’s Low Carbon Procurement Partnership (LCVPP), are the first step to achieving the 1,000 electric vehicles that the Mayor aims to bring into the city’s fleet by 2015. (Earlier post.)
|Report: City of London One of the Most Polluted Places in Europe|
|The Guardian reports that The City of London has been found to be one of the most polluted places in Europe after monitoring equipment recorded dangerous levels of minute particles for the 36th time this year.|
|Under EU rules, Britain is allowed no more than 35 "bad air" days in the whole year, and now faces court cases and unlimited fines by Europe.|
|The breaching of the EU levels after just six months will embarrass the government, which was sent a final warning only three weeks ago from the European commission to improve air quality. Many other places in central London are close to the limit and can be expected to break the law within weeks.|
The majority of the 1,000 electric vehicles for the GLA fleet will be used by the Metropolitan Police Service. TfL intends to purchase up to 120 electric vehicles by 2015. By the end of this year, TfL will have up to 10 electric vehicles in its fleet.
The EVs, with specially designed livery to distinguish them from traditional gasoline and diesel vehicles, will be used by TfL to ensure that roadworks comply with its permit scheme to keep traffic moving.
Increasing the number of fleet vehicles is one element of the Mayor’s plans to boost electric vehicle numbers to 100,000 by 2020.
Over the coming year, 1,600 charge points will be installed across the Capital with numbers rising to 7,500 by 2013 and 25,000 points will be in place by 2015. By then, with 2,500 charge points installed in publicly accessible areas, on average no Londoner will be further than a mile from any charge point.
The increase of zero tailpipe-emission electric vehicles, will help to improve air quality and cut climate change emissions, and as the price of gasoline and diesel continues to increase they have significantly lower running costs including an 100% exemption from the Congestion Charge.
Later this year a single London-wide brand for electric vehicles will be launched so that drivers will be able to clearly identify where a charging point is located. This will be supported by a new website providing a one-stop shop of information on electric vehicles and charging points and a London-wide membership scheme will also be launched to enable drivers to access charge points across the Capital; currently electric car drivers have to register in every borough they charge up in.
It is estimated that 100,000 electric vehicles could cut London’s carbon output by almost 500,000 tonnes over the next decade as well as save 100 tonnes of NOx emissions and several tonnes of PM10 emissions. This is equivalent to 300 million car trips.
(The figure of 300 million car trips is based on the assumption that the average daily car mileage in London is 15km, with the cars performing on average a return journey and that the 100,000 electric vehicles would replace 100,000 diesel or petrol vehicles currently in use.)
The new infrastructure and the additional electric vehicles on London's roads will help to encourage Londoners to use a more sustainable form of private transport and support the Mayor’s target to cut London’s CO2 emissions by 60% by 2025.
In March 2010, TfL placed a notice in the Official Journal of the European Union to create the UK’s largest procurement framework to date for electric vehicles. (Earlier post.) A separate framework was also advertised by TfL for the delivery of electric vehicle charge points. The vehicle framework would allow the purchase of up to 1,000 electric vehicles for the GLA family. Up to 300 additional vehicles can also be purchased through the vehicle framework by other organizations, predominantly UK local authorities.