Green campaigners and opposition politicians are claiming that a new grant scheme from the government to offer motorists around £5,000 off the price of an electric car has been reduced by about 80% today. According to these campaigners, the fate of low emission cars also now in question.
Philip Hammond, the transport secretary however confirmed that the grant will proceed as planned in January of next year as a sign of the Government’s complete commitment to securing the country’s energy supply, low carbon growth, and combating climate change.
Despite Hammond’s statement, the government still has only formally committed £43m to the fund, which is set to last until March 2012, at it will be once again looked at in January of 2012.
Spokesman for the shadow transport secretary, Sadiq Khan, stated that the original scheme may have been valued at £230m but there was not a plan for scheme renewal annually.
However, on the opposing side a spokesperson from the Department of Transport stated that the committed £43m in funds is the same proposition placed forth by the previous administration and could stretch to fund the purchase of 8,600 cars.
According to the terms of the new scheme, which is referred to as the ‘plugged in car grant,’ those who purchase electric cars will be offered 25% off of the price of the car by the Government with a cap placed at £5,000.
All of the major electric cars that are first generation are eligible for the scheme including the Misubishi i-MiEV, Nissan Leaf, and the Telsa Roadster which are all priced at above £20,000.
Khan stated that in order to make Britain a leader in low carbon emissions more ambition will need to be displayed than the current scheme holds.