The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has launched a new taskforce dedicated to boosting the infrastructure needed to increase the take-up of electric vehicles across the capital.
He encouraged the boroughs, the Government, and all those involved in the task force to work together and redouble efforts to install vital rapid charging points and help tackle London’s filthy air.
London is already doing a lot for the cause, with the rollout of electric buses, electric taxis and the installation of 104 rapid charging points.
London is a leader in this field relative to some of the world’s other largest cities, with more rapid charging points installed across the capital than New York, Stockholm, and Madrid.
However, the capital requires a major expansion in charging infrastructure to help businesses, taxi drivers and Londoners switch to electric, and the Mayor believes this must be delivered in partnership with the private sector.
The Mayor brings together representatives from business, energy, infrastructure, government and London boroughs at a special event to mark the launch of the taskforce, which comprises16 organisations including UK Power Networks, the British Retail Consortium and the RAC Foundation.
The work of the taskforce will also be outlined, including technical workshops run by Transport for London over the summer and a shared Delivery Plan to be published next year.
In addition to petrol stations, businesses and car parks, the participation of boroughs, who manage 95% of London’s roads, is vital.
Whilst boroughs have successfully installed thousands of residential charging points, more rapid charging points are urgently needed.
Sadiq Khan said: “I’m delighted to launch a new Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Taskforce today, bringing together industry, businesses and the public sector to work together to deliver electric vehicle charging infrastructure in the capital.
“London’s filthy air is a public health crisis, and encouraging more Londoners to switch from diesel to electric vehicles is critical in tackling it.
“We’ve already made some great progress with the rollout of electric buses, electric taxis and rapid charging points, alongside launching the Toxicity Charge (T-Charge) for the oldest polluting vehicles in central London and bringing forward the introduction of the world’s first Ultra-Low Emission Zone. But we cannot do this alone.
“We’ve received huge support for this new task force, showing it is not just an environment or transport issue but one that is vital to the future of our city, and organisations across all sectors are stepping up and accepting they have a part to play.
“This initiative will support London boroughs and ensure electric vehicle infrastructure is installed in the right places, and help make our city an even better place to live.”
Christina Calderato, Transport for London's head of delivery planning, said: “We are committed to making London a zero-emission city and this task force is an important step in achieving that.
“We are installing rapid charging points across London, only licensing zero emission capable taxis and by 2020 all single decker buses will be zero emission.
“However, we recognise more can be done and we are working hard with boroughs and the private sector to ensure London has the infrastructure needed to become an electric city.”
Helen Dickinson OBE, chief executive of the British Retail Consortium, added: "Retailers take their responsibilities towards the environment seriously.
“We welcome the launch of the Electric Vehicle Infrastructure taskforce and look forward to engaging closely with its members over the coming weeks and months.”
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