Better Late Than Never: Longbridge caretaker tests out electric cars for Birmingham City Council

July 2nd, 2015 § Comments Off on Better Late Than Never: Longbridge caretaker tests out electric cars for Birmingham City Council § permalink

Caretaker Gary Chalke demonstrates his electric works van which he can keep and charge on his driveway at home in Longbridge

Caretaker Gary Chalke demonstrates his electric works van which he can keep and charge on his driveway at home in Longbridge

A caretaker from Longbridge has been selected to test out electric cars for the whole of Birmingham City Council.

The authority has installed a charging point in Gary Chalke’s home to see if it can save thousands of pounds of taxpayers’ cash from its budgets.

Over the next three months, Gary, a district neighbourhood caretaker, will be tasked with using a low carbon Nissan e-NV200 van to measure its cost-efficiency.

If the trial is successful, and money is seen to be saved, more council staff will be asked to drive electric vehicles and offered the British Gas charging points, either at home or their workplace.

What is an electric car?

An earlier trial involving a pool car, a Nissan Leaf, used by care workers found that, as well as having zero carbon emissions, the car cost £1,660 less to maintain and tax over five years compared to regular council vehicles, and saved 6.2p per mile on running costs – cositng 3.3p instead of the 9.5p per mile for diesel.

Council cabinet member for neighbourhood management John Cotton said: “The results from the initial trial are encouraging and show there are clear advantages to making our fleet of vehicles greener.

“But we need to test a number of different scenarios to get the most out of such technology. Doing this the right way will save the council and the taxpayer money, while also helping to address issues relating to air quality and the health and wellbeing of our citizens.

“This latest trial will help shape a green vehicle fleet for the council in future.”

Andy Butler from British Gas added: “Innovative trials like this demonstrate that using electric vehicles as part of a council’s fleet can bring significant benefits – from saving money to improving local air quality.

“Electric vehicles are also really convenient for council staff as they can be charged at home or at work while they’re parked. The charging point we’ve installed is as easy to use as plugging in a mobile phone, so we’re confident that it will support the neighbourhood caretaker in their duties.“

Peterborough gets first ever zero-emission vehicle for private hire

July 2nd, 2015 § Comments Off on Peterborough gets first ever zero-emission vehicle for private hire § permalink

The zero-emission vehicleFor the first time a zero-emission electric vehicle will operate as part of Peterborough’s private hire fleet.

The city’s first ever electric private hire is now picking up passengers after being granted a licence today (Wednesday, July 1).

The green light was given by the council’s licensing committee last month who agreed to change conditions to allow the licensing of electric vehicles.

Tod Howard of Green Leaf Cars initially approached the council’s licensing team expressing an interest in licensing all-electric vehicles.

His firm has a strong commitment to the environment and already operates a fleet of hybrid Toyota Prius’.

The Nissan Leaf can travel around 110 miles before it needs recharging and will be able to utilize a number of electric charging points around the city. As well as being more environmentally friendly, it also cuts fuel costs.

If the two month trial proves a success, the operator hopes to permanently introduce one of the vehicles into his fleet.

Donna Hall, the council’s public protection manager, said: “This is a great opportunity for the city and I hope further taxi and private hire providers look to broaden their fleet with electric cars.”

Councillor Nigel North, cabinet member for environment capital and communities, said: “This decision demonstrates our aspiration to become the UK’s environment capital as well as our commitment to reduce carbon emissions in the city.

“We have a number of charging points in the city so I hope this is the first of many electric private hire vehicles on our roads picking up fares.”

Audi joins hybrid SUV party with Q7 e-tron 2.0 TFSI quattro

April 20th, 2015 § Comments Off on Audi joins hybrid SUV party with Q7 e-tron 2.0 TFSI quattro § permalink

The world’s luxury SUV manufacturers have finally jumped aboard the hybrid bandwagon, with BMW, Volvo, Mercedes and now Audi preparing hybrid versions of their four-wheel drive family haulers. The Audi Q7 e-tron 2.0 TFSI quattro offers claimed best-in-class electric-only range thanks to a 17.3 kW/h fluid-cooled battery pack.

audi-q7-20-etron-hybrid-0

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Hope Its True: 40% Cut In UK Oil Imports From EVs?

March 17th, 2015 § Comments Off on Hope Its True: 40% Cut In UK Oil Imports From EVs? § permalink

A new study says that if the U.K. invests in electric vehicle infrastructure and supports its electric vehicle market, oil imports could be cut by 40% by 2030. Yes, by 2030 – just 15 years from now. If the U.K. does provide such support, the average fossil fuel motorist that switches to an EV might also save about $1,500 in annual fuel costs. The reduction in air pollutants emitted by gas-powered vehicles could decrease human health problems like respiratory illness. Such a public health improvement was calculated to be worth one billion pounds of value. 

Additionally, a 47% reduction in vehicle carbon emissions might result.

So you might say that’s a lot “ifs” and “coulds,” but research reports like the one produced for the Foundation by Cambridge Econometrics, and commissioned by the European Climate Foundation, are not rock-solid predictions; they are based on data analysis and estimates. The point is to help us envision a future that is both healthier for us and the planet, not to promise anything. The road, so to speak, to this better future is not extremely clear, and the journey will most likely include some rough patches, delays and confusion, but better results are possible.

Specifically, the infrastructure that is need is more EV charging stations, so vehicles can be recharged wherever and whenever they need to be. Government policies and incentives can only go so far: consumers will have to come on board as well, but that doesn’t seem to be a barrier. As we saw in July, almost 40% of UK luxury car owners surveyed said that had some interest in electric vehicles.

That research was conducted and reported on before news came about the possibility of 200 mile-per-charge electric cars coming out sooner than anyone expected. The luxury car owners in the UK indicated that they would be more open to an EV with a 300 mile range, but once more affordable EVS with 200 are available, such as offerings from Chevy and possibly Nissan, they might be persuaded. In other words, the shift from fossil fuel vehicles to electric ones might happen a little faster than we may think it will.

For example, the Tesla Model S is generally regarded very enthusiastically by its owners, and they might not ever want to go back to a gas-powered car. If Tesla can produce its smaller commuter vehicle, then mass adoption of EVS might become even more likely.

http://cleantechnica.com/2015/03/16/40-cut-uk-oil-imports-evs/

12 cities to 2-4 winners & £65 million funding for ultra-low emission cities and green buses

March 11th, 2015 § Comments Off on 12 cities to 2-4 winners & £65 million funding for ultra-low emission cities and green buses § permalink

Twelve British cities shortlisted to become international beacons of ultra-low emission vehicle use.

A dozen cities bidding for a share of a £35 million fund to become centres of excellence for low emission vehicles have been announced by Transport Minister Baroness Kramer and Business Minister Matt Hancock today (11 March 2015).

The Go Ultra Low city scheme will reward cities that demonstrate the most potential to become internationally outstanding examples for the adoption of ultra low emission vehicles (ULEVs) in a local area.

The funding has been announced alongside an additional £30 million to enable local authorities and bus operators to replace existing vehicles with greener, cutting-edge alternatives to help clean up urban air quality.
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France will pay citizens $11,000 to upgrade to electric vehicles

February 17th, 2015 § Comments Off on France will pay citizens $11,000 to upgrade to electric vehicles § permalink

Getting a green vehicle in France could bank you some greenbacks, provided you have an old gas guzzler to exchange. France is implementing a new initiative to financially compensate car owners who trade in a diesel vehicle, aged 13 years or more, for a fully electric vehicle or a plug-in hybrid. The campaign comes from the Ministry of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy, and seeks to target older cars, which are responsible for a disproportionate percentage of greenhouse gas emissions.
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Green light for electric car charging point in Basingstoke

September 10th, 2014 § Comments Off on Green light for electric car charging point in Basingstoke § permalink

ELECTRIC car users across Basingstoke will now be able to charge their cars at a charging point in the town centre after Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council gave the green light to the scheme.

As reported by The Gazette, the borough council applied in May for planning permission to install an electric vehicle rapid charger unit at Central car park, in Red Lion Lane, for electric vehicles.

Planning officers have now approved the application, which means that one car parking space will be lost to accommodate the charging unit.

The borough council made a successful bid for Government funding from the Office for Low Emission Vehicles, and as a result, 75 per cent of the cost of installing the rapid charger will be paid for by the Government. The remaining 25 per cent will be paid for by the Nissan Consortium.

The charging unit can fully charge an electrical vehicle in just 30 minutes and is just one of 100 rapid chargers available nationwide.

Other charging points surrounding the borough are at the Little Chef, in Popham on the A303 westbound and at Fleet Services on the M3.

Councillor Hayley Eachus, Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council’s Cabinet member for community services and the environment, said: “As well as cutting carbon emissions, there are huge savings that can be made by switching to an electric car, and to have one of only one hundred rapid chargers here in Basingstoke should make residents consider this option seriously.”

The charger is expected to be installed later this year.

Chargemaster confirms free wallbox offer to continue

August 12th, 2014 § Comments Off on Chargemaster confirms free wallbox offer to continue § permalink

The company said it will continue to install 3kW wallboxes at no cost to the end user, including six months’ membership to the POLAR charging point network and free online usage monitoring, which usually costs £20 per year.

An extension of the original Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme, OLEV provides 75% of the cost of a charging point up to the cost of £900, rather than the original £1,000 cap.
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Great Stuff: Electric car charging points coming to West Berkshire

May 21st, 2014 § Comments Off on Great Stuff: Electric car charging points coming to West Berkshire § permalink

TWO electric car charging points will be installed in the district in the next financial year.

Each charging point will cost £10,000 to install – with the majority of that figure being met in the form of a grant from the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) and the rest being funded by the council.

The ‘fast chargers’ will allow an electric car to be fully charged within two to four hours, as opposed to the more expensive ‘rapid’ version, which can charge a car within 30 minutes. » Read the rest of this entry «

No Joke: Are AA-battery powered cars the future?

April 1st, 2014 § Comments Off on No Joke: Are AA-battery powered cars the future? § permalink

Ground-breaking research by LipraLoof and City Car Club (CCC) has resulted in the world’s first AA-style battery powered car.

This revolutionary technology is not only environmentally sustainable due to its low carbon emissions but is also ultra low cost as compared to most electric vehicles (EVs). LipraLoof’s proprietary system removes the need to recharge completely; it’s now as easy as buying household batteries from your local store.

As the UK’s leading car club with a 730 strong fleet of hire by the hour cars, City Car Club is very excited about LipraLoof’s breakthrough research. Their focus on alternative and more economically viable methods of transport ties in with the technologies benefits. » Read the rest of this entry «

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