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Theresa May to commit over £100m to low emission vehicle technology

Theresa May to commit over £100m to low emission vehicle technology

Theresa May - Image credit: Parliament TV

Theresa May is expedcted to announce a commitment today of more than £100m towards low emission technology for vehicles in a bid to make Britain a "world leader" in the sector.

The Prime Minister is set to unveil a funding boost for research and development into green vehicles, new batteries and low carbon products.

Within the package, £25m is earmarked for developing batteries for electric vehicles, £20m will go towards a hydrogen supply competition, while £22m will fund the Integrated Delivery Programme - which supports universities’ and businesses’ research into new technologies

Meanwhile businesses including Aston Martin and US engines firm Cummins will commit more than £500m to projects based in Britain, creating over 1,000 jobs.

The PM will also join 11 other countries, including Italy and France, in signing a new international declaration that will start “a new era of global collaboration” in promoting the use of green vehicles and zero emission infrastructure.

The so-called “Birmingham Declaration” will pledge to drive up air quality standards, deliver greener public transport and support investment into research and development into zero emission technologies.

Addressing the first ever Zero Emission Vehicle Summit in Birmingham, May will say that the “ambitious” proposals will see Britain “leading from the front… to spearhead change” in the target to have all new cars and vans as effectively zero emission by 2040. 

She will say: “Already we are taking significant strides forward. Our electric UK manufactured cars account for one in five sold in Europe. Our batteries are among the best in the world.

“And our Road to Zero Strategy is the most comprehensive plan globally – mapping out in detail how we will reach our target for all new cars and vans to be effectively zero emission by 2040 – and for every car and van to be zero emission by 2050…

“These measures will drive the design, use, uptake and infrastructure necessary for cleaner, greener vehicles – and in doing so, it will help us drastically reduce a major contributor to our global warming emissions, as we seek to meet the Paris Climate Change Agreement.”

Labour MP and campaigner for pro-EU group Best for Britain, David Lammy, said the announcement ignored the impact Brexit would have on car manufacturing industry.

“The ten-tonne elephant in the room in this announcement is Brexit. Car manufacturers have been clear that leaving the EU risks tens of thousands of jobs in the industry,” he said.

“The fact that the Prime Minister does not even mention her government’s plans to detach this country from the world’s single largest trading bloc demonstrates a complete detachment from reality.

“The aim to become a world leader is low-emission tech is admirable, but to do so we need to be able to sell our products to our European neighbours without barriers.”

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