New £20m funding boost for electric car rollout in Scotland

Nicola Sturgeon has unveiled funding for electric vehicle charging
Nicola Sturgeon has unveiled funding for electric vehicle charging

Funding of more than £20 million has been announced by the Scottish Government to boost the number of electric vehicles in Scotland.

A number of local authorities across the country will receive investment to help them to install charge points, as well as receiving new electric vehicles.

The funding will be made available through the Switched on Towns and Cities Challenge Fund and the Local Authority Installation Programme.

Transport Secretary Michael Matheson said electric vehicles can bring “profound benefits” and outlined the Scottish Government’s climate targets.

“Supporting the uptake of ultra-low emission vehicles is integral to Scotland’s sustainable economic growth,” he said.

“Electric vehicles are a key component of our Climate Change Plan and our goal of making Scotland’s air quality the best in Europe.

“That is why we have set our ambitious target to phase out the need to purchase new petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2032.

“Electric vehicles can bring profound benefits and by announcing over £20 million to support new electric vehicle infrastructure, further reinforcing what is already one of the most comprehensive charging networks in Europe, demonstrates the strength of our continued commitment to this agenda.”

The five authorities that will receive the funding for 2018-2019 are Dundee City Council, Edinburgh City Council, Falkirk Council, Glasgow City Council and Stirling Council.

On Monday, the Transport Secretary visited a new charging hub outside of the Falkirk Stadium, which is expected to provide 26 charging points when it has been completed.

The renewable energy will be provided by a solar panel canopy with support from a battery storage facility.

“I commend Falkirk Council’s ambition and I’m proud the Scottish Government could support their vision through our popular Low Carbon Transport and Travel Challenge Fund,” Mr Matheson added.

Falkirk Council leader Cecil Meiklejohn said: “The new hub will ensure that residents and visitors alike will have 24/7 access to charging points at a central location.

“It’s something we want to see expanded and we know will make a difference to our environment.”

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