Transport Secretary encourages UK to switch to electric vehicles

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps. Image: Gov.uk

A new government-backed app will help drivers to see which electric vehicles best suit their lifestyle.

Drivers across the UK can explore making the switch to an electric vehicle with a new government-backed app, the Transport Secretary said. As the UK prepares to host the COP26 climate summit this November, government is working with industry to provide the tools and practical advice drivers need to go electric.

A free app called EV8 Switch – backed by £2.7 million of UK Space Agency funding – launches today, September 9. It calculates how much money UK drivers could save by switching to an EV compared to their current petrol or diesel vehicle, along with details on the carbon dioxide (CO2) savings and air quality improvements they could achieve.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said, “This World EV Day, I want to not only provide easy access to the tools that people need to feel confident about making the switch, but also to make sure that chargepoints are accessible, affordable and recognisable.

“That’s why we have already committed £1.3 billion to accelerate the rollout of charging infrastructure up and down the country. And as we look forward to COP26 and beyond, our vision is that the UK is at the forefront of the zero emission transport future, creating thousands of green jobs in the process,” he added.

Drivers can also see which electric vehicles would be the most suitable for them based on their current vehicle and how switching to electric could fit in with their current lifestyle. Those with the app can also see how close their nearest chargepoints are, and which journeys can be completed without the need to top-up en-route.

The zero emission car market in the UK is accelerating quickly with more models coming onto the market and one in 7 cars sold this year having a plug.

The government is also helping drivers across the country with an extension to the £50 million government fund to install electric vehicle chargepoints.

The move will see small businesses such as B&Bs gain access to the Workplace Charging Scheme, supporting the UK tourism industry and improving access to rural areas. It will also see those in leasehold and rented accommodation enjoy the benefits of the Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme, encouraging people to make the switch in areas where charging provision is currently more limited and potentially more challenging to secure. ​


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Written by

Deirdre Tynan

Deirdre Tynan is an award-winning journalist who enjoys bringing the best in news reporting to Spain’s largest English-language newspaper, Euro Weekly News. She has previously worked at The Mirror, Ireland on Sunday and for news agencies, media outlets and international organisations in America, Europe and Asia. A huge fan of British politics and newspapers, Deirdre is equally fascinated by the political scene in Madrid and Sevilla. She moved to Spain in 2018 and is based in Jaen.

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