Cenex, the UK’s centre of excellence for low carbon and fuel cell technologies, has been appointed as the Department for Transport’s delivery partner to develop the new Low Carbon Vehicle Procurement Programme (LCVPP).
The aim of the programme, announced in the May 2007 Energy White Paper, is to accelerate the introduction of lower carbon technologies onto the UK vehicle market, reducing overall carbon emissions from the vehicle fleet.
Adrian Vinsome, Cenex’s programme manager for the Low Carbon Vehicle Procurement Programme, said: ‘By providing suppliers with the opportunity to demonstrate the real-world performance of their low carbon technologies in high profile public sector fleets, and providing definite evidence of public sector demand, the programme should promote the introduction of new technology at a small-fleet level.
‘Making the transition from single vehicle demonstrators to volume introduction is a well-recognised problem for the industry, particularly for smaller manufacturers, and the programme will help to overcome this barrier. A further consequence of this reduced risk for the manufacturers is that it should also stimulate further innovation, leading to more efficient, lower carbon vehicles for everyone in longer term.’
Initial funding of £20m is available to help meet the additional costs for public sector organisations of procuring innovative, lower carbon vehicles, with the potential of a further £30m if early results are successful. The programme will focus on the development of lower-carbon vans in the first phase, with smaller scale procurements of lower-carbon minibuses, all-electric vans, and plug-in hybrid passenger cars.