East London gears up for electric car sharing Hackney Citizen

23 Май 2014 | Author: | Комментарии к записи East London gears up for electric car sharing Hackney Citizen отключены
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East London gears up for electric car sharing

Lean and green: E-Car Club has lift off! Photograph: mattphoto.co.uk

An electric car sharing club which aims to tackle the growing problem of air pollution has been launched in East London and could soon come to Hackney.

Transport Minister Baroness Kramer launched E-Car Club in Poplar last month, and talks are already in progress to extend the service to Hackney.

The scheme follows on the heels of car share pioneers Zipcar, but with an important difference: its fleet of vehicles is entirely electric, meaning less money spent on fuel and a reduced carbon footprint.

Christopher Morris, co-founder of the firm, said: “We have been in discussion with Hackney Council for the past six months over a new branch and we are hopeful of being able to announce something before the end of this year.”

As well as providing the public with easy and affordable access to low carbon vehicles, Mr Morris believes the cars can also help businesses with costly and carbon-intensive car fleets.

He said: “We want to improve mobility on a local level whilst simultaneously reducing the cost and environmental impact of each

journey taken.”

According to Mr Morris the interest in E-Car Club, which was founded in 2011, has so far been huge, leading the firm to prepare to rollout  nationwide.

“Altogether, we are working with 30 organisations, local authorities, universities and housing authorities,” he said.

“Electric cars are the more sustainable option – reducing the carbon footprint should be the aim, whatever the type of car.”

Air pollution on some London roads is a serious problem, with nitrogen oxide levels more than triple the legal limit in some places.

The Transport Research Laboratory estimates that replacing 10 per cent of UK business fleet with electric vehicles would reduce emissions by half a million tonnes of carbon dioxide a year.

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The government is keen to push the ‘car club’ business model to challenge attitudes about electric cars.

During the launch, Baroness Susan Kramer called the car club “a scheme that kills three birds with one stone congestion, cost and carbon.”

It is not the only new car club in East London, however. City Car Club has started operating in Hackney, taking the number of car share vehicles up to 150.

Councillor Feryal Demirci, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, said: “Car clubs are proving extremely popular, with more than 7,800 members in Hackney.

“Using a car club could save you up to £3,500 a year on tax, insurance, parking permits, servicing and repairs.”

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