Government announces £37m electric car funding

The Government has announced a fresh £37 million investment into infrastructure for electric vehicles across the UK.

The new funding scheme will be available to improve home and on-street charging, with railway station and council-run car parks also able to have plug-in charge points.

It is hoped that it will help to drive a lot more people towards eco-friendly motoring.

The cash comes from the £400 million put forward by the Government to help stimulate increased uptake of low-emission vehicles and it will be available until April 2015.

The Government will cover 75% of the costs for installing the new charge points, with individual drivers, councils and train operators all able to apply for the grants.

Individual drivers can get them at their homes, while local authorities can apply to install rapid charge points for longer journeys and street charging for those who do not have private parking spaces.

The cash available for each purpose is broken down into £13.5 million for a 75% grant for domestic charge points.

Meanwhile, a total of £11 million has been earmarked for 75% grants for local authorities across the country, providing for rapid charge points being installed in their areas if it fits in well with the strategic road network.

The funding package also covers the £280,000 set aside to expand the Energy Saving Trust's plugged-in fleets scheme in England.

Under those plans 100 public and private sector fleets will receive help to understand the benefits of switching to ultra-low emission vehicles and what a difference it could make to their operations.

Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin explained how the investment demonstrates the Government's strong commitment to making Britain a world-leader in the electric car industry.

"Plug-in vehicles can help the consumer by offering a good driving experience and low running costs," he added.

"They can help the environment by cutting pollution. And most importantly of all, they can help the British economy by creating skilled manufacturing jobs in a market that is bound to get bigger."

Business Minister Michael Fallon also stressed the importance of low emission vehicles to the country, adding: "Today's announcement will make the consumer environment for plug-in vehicles more attractive and, in turn, makes the UK a more compelling place to invest. There are huge business opportunities so we're committed to ensuring the UK leads the way globally for low carbon vehicles."

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