Encouraging businesses to electrify their fleets

A new ‘Try before you buy’ scheme will allow businesses to try electric vehicles for free for two months. The free trial is made possible thanks to Highways England, who are handing over £9 million to local authorities in order to encourage businesses to electrify their fleets.

The goal of this initiative is to motivate businesses and organisations to make the switch to lower carbon, less polluting vehicles.
Electric vehicles produce zero direct carbon emissions and are playing a significant role in building a cleaner and more sustainable future, particularly when powered by renewable energy, and particularly as the UK works towards a zero-carbon economy in 2050.

After the scheme successfully launched with Leeds City Council earlier this year, other councils are working to set up their own. On World EV Day last week, the company announced a funding agreement of over £3 million with Bristol City Council.

Councillor James Lewis, Deputy Leader of Leeds City Council said about the scheme:

“It’s still early days, but it’s really promising to see participants starting to invest in electric vehicles of their own. Every organisation choosing to switch to EVs is making a real difference—helping to clean the air we breathe and tackle the climate emergency.”

This scheme is among a vast range of measures that Highways England is deploying with the goal of cutting carbon emissions and improving air quality. It is made possible by Highways England’s Designated Funds programme, which, with a £936m investment, is directed towards benefitting people, the economy and the planet between 2020 and 2025.

Jim O’Sullivan, Highways England Chief Executive, commented:

“We are working with councils across the country to encourage businesses to make the switch to electric vehicles and we expect many more to start using electric vehicles when they experience the savings possible. (…) This is a key example of how we are using designated funds to benefit the environment and communities around our roads as well as the people travelling and working on them.”

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