The UK Electric Fleets Alliance has been launched by the Climate Group and founding member BT Group, to advocate for transport electrification.
The Alliance will convene a leadership coalition with the purpose of advocating for the acceleration of the UK electric vehicle (EV) transition ahead of COP26, which has been postponed to 2021 due to COVID-19.
The BT Group – which includes Openreach - said that it is “using its purchasing power to send a powerful signal to auto manufacturers demanding change”, with the Group operating the UK's second largest commercial fleet in the UK. It has almost 34,000 vehicles, of which over 28,000 are used by Openreach engineers.
The new partnership, it said, is to help design policy measures such as stimulating EV supply and investing in EV charging through communicating the benefits of electrification, with the aim of supporting corporate EV uptake.
The Climate Group already administers the EV100 initiative, which encourages companies to pledge to electrify their fleets by 2030. Companies within the energy sector that have already joined EV100 include Centrica and SSE.
“As a coalition, the UK Electric Fleets Alliance will show policymakers the appetite for ambitious EV policies and inspire outcomes that will make the transition to electric vehicles faster,” Helen Clarkson, CEO of the Climate Group, said.
The announcement of the Alliance comes as part of a number of green announcements from BT.
The telecommunications giant is also launching a Green Tech Innovation Platform, which it says is to "uncover the latest technologies from UK-based tech scale-ups" to help BT and its public sector customers transition to net zero.
In particular, it will look into smart streets, smart homes and ways 5G can be used to enable remote working.
Philip Jansen, chief executive of BT Group, said: "The switch to low and zero emissions vehicles is a key element in our carbon strategy and this new partnership will be critical in allowing us to make the switch. We hope that this coalition will help drive the necessary bold action from other businesses and policymakers needed to transition to the low carbon economy.”