Bath & North East Somerset Council is set to more than double the number of electric vehicle charging points across the district after being awarded a share of a £7.5 million pound grant from the Office for Low Emission Vehicles.
The announcement was made by Andrew Jones, Under Secretary of State for Transport, during a visit to Bristol today.
It follows a successful joint bid by the Council and 3 other West of England authorities (Bristol, South Gloucestershire and North Somerset) for Go Ultra Low Cities government funding.
The cash will be used to encourage uptake in Ultra Low Emission Vehicle use which covers vehicles that produce 75 grams of carbon dioxide or less per kilometre, including electric and plug in hybrid.
More than 30 new fast and rapid public charging points will now be installed across Bath and North East Somerset, bringing the total number of public charge points across the area to 50.
Bath & North East Somerset Council also plans to use the money to convert at least 25 per cent of its light vehicles to ULEVs.
This will result in a significant saving on fuel bills as well as a reduction in the harmful emissions being pumped into the air.
Councillor Tim Warren, (Conservative, Mendip) Leader of Bath & North East Somerset Council, said: “The success of this bid for Government funding is great news and will allow us to continue our work to reduce road traffic emissions, which impact on air quality and the health of our residents.
“As a Council we’ve already started greening our fleet which reduces our vehicle running costs at the same time as improving air quality.
“This scheme will enable us to further develop the potential of ultra-low emission vehicles, focussing particularly on the three Air Quality Management Areas of Bath, Saltford and Keynsham.”
Councillor Anthony Clarke (Conservative, Lansdown), Cabinet member for Transport, said: “We are committed to improving the air quality within our communities by reducing toxic emissions.
“Increasing the number of low emission vehicles using our local transport system is essential to achieving this.
“With an increase in charging points we hope to demonstrate that ULEVs are a viable green transport alternative.”
There are also plans to establish new ULEV car clubs across Bath and North East Somerset and the Council will be working with business and supermarkets to encourage them to switch to ULEVs and build more charge points.