• More than £200 million invested to launch ’world’s largest fleet of zero emission heavy goods vehicles (HGVs)’, accelerating plans to decarbonise road freight.
  • Plans to eliminate fossil fuels from HGV haulage will help to reduce delivery costs. 
  • New plans support government’s COP26 pledge, ensuring all new HGVs sold in the UK will be zero emission by 2040
  • DfT publishes the full response to a public consultation on phase-out dates for the sale of new, non-zero emission HGVs
  • Consultation launched on HGVs or HGV use cases that could justify being exempt from the 2035 phase-out date for the sale of new, non-zero emission HGVs 26 tonnes and under. 

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More than £200 million of government funding will be injected into an extensive zero emission road freight demonstrator programme, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Transport Trudy Harrison has revealed.

The three-year comparative programme will begin later this year with the goal of helping to decarbonise the UK’s freight industry, with initial competitions for battery electric and hydrogen fuel cell technology launching shortly.

The demonstrations are designed to help gather evidence on the future refuelling and recharging infrastructure needed to drive the  transition to a zero-emission freight sector by 2050.

During a presentation at Logistics UK’s Future Logistics Conference, Transport Minister Trudy Harrison said: ”Our road freight industry is one of the most efficient in the world and contributes over £13 billion to the UK economy each year. But we must accelerate our journey towards our net zero goals, and we’re committed to leading the way globally on non-zero emission road vehicles.

”Our ambitious plans will continue to ensure food is stocked on the shelves and goods are supplied while eliminating fossil fuels from HGVs and making our freight sector green for good.”

The demonstrations aim to help the UK’s freight sector reduce its reliance on fossil fuels by finding which zero emission technologies are best suited to the heaviest road vehicles in the UK.

An open-call competition will be launched for manufacturers, energy providers and fleet and infrastructure operators to showcase their green technology on UK roads. This will begin with demonstrations of battery electric and hydrogen fuel cell HGVs.

The announcement expands the Department for Transport’s (DfT) £20 million zero-emission road freight trials which ran last year, 

Minister Harrison also articulated plans to deliver on ambitious pledges made at COP26 last year that all new HGVs sold in the UK will be zero emission from 2040. 

Today (May 12)  DfT published the full response to a public consultation on phase-out dates for the sale of new, non-zero emission HGVs, confirming the scale of the ambition to eliminate carbon emissions from road freight.

It confirmed it is fulfilling its commitment to consult with industry to identify potential exemptions to the 2035 phase out date for HGVs, weighing 26 tonnes and under, which may need longer to transition to zero-emission technologies. The call for evidence opened today and will last until 22 July 2022.