Electric Roads Consortium says ‘yes’ to zero-emission by 2040 aim for trucks

The Electric Roads Consortium welcomes today’s commitment by the Department for Transport that all new heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) must emit zero emissions by 2040.

The Department for Transport has awarded funding to the consortium to lead the UK’s first ever study on the electrification of long-range trucks with dynamic charging, using overhead wires on motorways. A pilot is planned for the M180 from Immingham to Doncaster 

On behalf of the Electric Roads Consortium, Professor David Cebon from the Centre for Sustainable Road Freight commented, “It’s great to see Government’s continued commitment to taking diesel HGVs off our roads in order to hit the net zero target.

“The key question now is which solutions will be best suited to fill the gap left by diesel HGVs? These solutions will have to be near zero carbon, low cost, able to satisfy all the complex operational needs of the logistics industry and implementable across the UK by 2040.”

Electric roads have great potential to reduce road freight emissions from the largest HGVs in the quickest, and most cost-effective way.  They have the advantage of using proven technologies that can be scaled to a national level quickly, within years, not decades.

The Electric Roads Consortium’s proposed demonstrator project will benefit from lessons learned in the successful field trials in Sweden and Germany. The UK study will show how the wider logistics system – with its transport hubs, ports, airports, distribution centres and depots – will function with electric lorries.

The demonstration project is focusing on a 20km stretch of the M180 in the east of England near Scunthorpe, linking Immingham Port with the logistics hubs of Doncaster. 

The scheme is expected to cost approximately £100m in construction and will be delivered by a collaboration between ten organisations, all bringing their individual areas of expertise in sustainable transport.

Professor Cebon said, “Deploying electric roads in the UK is very attractive as the technology is proven. It can be implemented at scale, sooner, making it the  most feasible way to steer UK road freight to a net zero future. We’re looking forward to making our contribution to a greener future for road freight in the UK.”

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