More East Riding drivers going green as number of electric vehicles surge

More drivers in the East Riding are going green as the number of electric vehicles registered in the area surged last year, figures show.

Monday, 17th May 2021, 3:00 pm
Statistics show 1,021 ultra-low emission vehicles (ULEVs) were licensed in the East Riding at the end of last year. Phorto: PA Images

But the Labour Party says the Government needs to do more to make eco-friendly cars more affordable for families across the UK as national data suggests uptake as a whole is being driven more by companies.

Department for Transport statistics show 1,021 ultra-low emission vehicles (ULEVs) were licensed in the East Riding at the end of last year – 352 more than at the end of 2019, when there were 669.

The figures include battery electric, plug-in hybrid electric, and fuel cell electric vehicles. Of the additions, the majority (248) were registered to private keepers, while 104 were to the addresses of local firms.

The DfT said a vehicle’s address does not necessarily reflect where it is located, especially for large fleets kept by companies for leasing.

Overall, ULEVs still only accounted for around 0.4% of all vehicles licensed in the East Riding at the end of 2020 – below the UK average of 1.1%.

The Government has committed to ending the sale of new petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2030, and ensuring all new sales are “zero emissions at the tailpipe” by 2035.

In March, the Government cut grants for electric car buyers from £3,000 to £2,500 and lowered the cap of eligible cars to £35,000, down from £50,000.

“With the climate emergency worsening, increases in electric vehicle sales are always welcome,” said Kerry McCarthy, Labour’s shadow minister for green transport.

“However, rather than encouraging this trend, the Government seems to be doing all it can to stifle progress by slashing subsidies to electric vehicles and failing to set out a roadmap to smoothly transition away from petrol and diesel vehicles by 2030.

Transport Minister Rachel Maclean said that more alternative fuel cars were registered across Great Britain for the first time last year, although this includes some types of hybrid vehicles not classed as ULEVs. She said: “This is proof that more people are moving away from diesel cars, as we build back greener and clean up the air in our towns and cities.”