Fleet News

Low carbon group seeks more support from fleet buyers

A PARTNERSHIP created to promote a shift to clean low carbon vehicles is asking for support from the fleet industry.

The Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership (LowCVP) said fleet involvement was vital if it was to achieve its aim of ensuring emissions from new cars are nearly half the current level by 2012.

Comprising a partnership of industry, Government, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and academia, it is tasked with moving forward the Government's bid to reduce vehicle emissions and hosted its first annual meeting last week.

It has created six working groups which are currently studying areas such as passenger cars, fuels, research and development and supply chains.

At the AGM, Paul Everitt, who heads the passenger car group and is head of policy for the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), said: 'We will be looking at what people need in terms of information to ensure they can make better choices. Fleets are incredibly important to us and we are now in a position to start communicating with them to promote our work and explain what role they can play.'

Although independent of Government, the partnership works closely with the Department for Transport (DfT), the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and other departments. It aims to help carry through the UK's Powering Future Vehicles Strategy, which was launched last year and plans to ensure that one in 10 cars are low carbon within the next 10 years.

The definition of a low carbon car is one that emits less than 100g/km of CO2, or the equivalent of about 70mpg.

Last week also marked the opening of the UK's first liquefied natural gas (LNG) refuelling station on a public access motorway. Transport Minister David Jamieson opened the Chive Fuels facility at Severn View services in Bristol.

The company said the development of the natural gas vehicle market had traditionally been hampered by extra capital costs and a lack of a refuelling network.

A spokesman added: 'With the expansion of Chive Fuels' UK-wide gas network the picture is changing and gas power is now a more practical proposition, even for smaller fleets.'

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