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Government announces £20 million funding for low-emission freight trials

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The government has announced £20 million of funding for companies developing low and zero-emission transport technologies.

The finance will be used to progress 20 hydrogen, biogas and electric vehicle trial projects in the freight industry, which accounts for 30% of the UK’s CO2 transport emissions.

French industrial gases supplier Air Liquide Group will receive the largest amount of funding – £2.57 million – to trial biogas in 86 lorries and a prototype liquid nitrogen system.

Liverpool-based ULEMco will receive £1.31 million to carry out trials using hydrogen dual-fuel technology, and delivery firm UPS will get £1.33 million to invest in smart charging of its electric vans in London.

Transport Minister John Hayes said: “Each one of these successful projects will help cut vehicle emissions, improving air quality and reducing pollution in towns and cities.”

The funding is being delivered by the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) and Innovate UK.

Simon Edmonds, manufacturing and materials director at Innovate UK said:  “These 20 projects around the UK will spearhead the uptake of the next generation of innovative low emission freight and fleet vehicles. The impact will benefit the environment, particularly in our big cities.”

Dr Nina Skorupska CBE, chief executive of the Renewable Energy Association, welcomed the funding and said: “An excellent next step would be to support greater integration of biofuels into the transport energy mix. This would help the UK meet its short and medium term milestones for carbon reduction and would be a great win for the climate.”

The government has a target for all new cars and vans to be zero emission by 2040.

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