In an effort to promote greener transportation options and reduce emissions, the latest round of grant funding from Energy Saving Trust and Transport Scotland has been released.
This funding presents an exciting opportunity for businesses operating in Scotland to obtain interest-free loans for new electric taxis or transition their Euro 5 taxis and vans to Euro 6, subsequently avoiding Low Emission Zone (LEZ) charges.
Cybrand AEC Ltd, a leading vehicle retrofitting firm in the industry, has voiced their commitment to assisting customers in securing the necessary funding for these conversions. A Cybrand spokesperson said: “As the latest round of grant funding from Energy Saving Trust and Transport Scotland is released we are working hard to get quotes out to customers looking to secure the funding for converting Euro 5 taxis and vans to Euro 6 and prevent paying LEZ charges.”
The low emission zone retrofit fund provides eligible ‘micro businesses’, which taxi driver operators will be eligible as if they operate within one of Scotland’s four low emission zones, with support to retrofit their existing non-compliant vehicles.
This retrofit is done with clean vehicle retrofit accreditation scheme (CVRAS) approved solutions that meet the minimum standards of the Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Dundee low emission zones.
Grants are available to cover up to 70% of the cost of a vehicle retrofit, subject to the following terms and conditions:
Up to £6,000 per light commercial vehicle and wheelchair accessible taxi that are installing retrofit exhaust after-treatment systems.
Up to £12,000 per wheelchair accessible taxi installing re-powering technology, to replace diesel engines with battery electric.
Alternatively, cabbies have the option of a loan program facilitated by Energy Saving Trust and funded by Transport Scotland. Businesses can consider investing in new electric vehicles through the switched on taxis loan.
This loan is not limited to a specific type of operator, it is open to both hackney cab operators and private-hire vehicle drivers. Hackney cabs, which include purpose-built, public hire taxis, are eligible for the loan. The loan amounts available will be determined by the registration status of the business. Limited companies can borrow up to £150,000, while sole traders or partnerships can receive loans of up to £75,000.
It is important to note that multiple applications can be made, subject to the availability of funds. However, the total amount owed to Energy Saving Trust must not exceed the funding allocated at any given time.
Applications for the switched on taxis loan are now open, so interested individuals and businesses are encouraged to explore this funding option and make the switch to electric vehicles for a more sustainable future.