Charging points for electric taxis are set to be installed in Rochford District and Basildon Borough, following a successful joint funding bid.
The funding will enable two charging points, at a cost of £75,000, to be installed in Rayleigh High Street and at Rochford Railway station as part of ongoing efforts to improve local air quality.
Further funding will enable three charging points for private hire and hackney carriages to be installed in Basildon, Billericay and Wickford.
Announced this week by the Future of Mobility Minister, a total of more than £450K will be used for the installation of 17 charge points in the East of England; at Southend-on-Sea, Luton, Peterborough, and Rochford District and Basildon.
This announcement is another milestone in the delivery of the government’s Road to Zero Strategy and Future of Mobility Grand Challenge, which aims to take advantage of the extraordinary innovation in UK engineering and technology to usher in cleaner, greener journeys.
Leader of Rochford District Council, Cllr Terry Cutmore, said: "Rochford District Council is always exploring new means to improve our air quality, including the pursual of relevant funding opportunities which will benefit local residents. I would like to thank all those involved in putting this successful bid together, which will benefit our environment into the future.
"We are among just 17 authorities nationally to receive a share of a £6million funding pot made available for the installation of new charging points for electric taxis. The hope is that this will act as a catalyst to encourage more drivers to seriously consider the use of electric vehicles."
Councillor Kevin Blake, Basildon Council’s Chairman of the Leisure, Culture and Environment Committee, said: "I am delighted we have been successful in this funding and would like to thank officers for their hard work in putting the bid together. We continue to work closely with Rochford and Essex County Council to find ways to improve air quality in the area with a range of measures. This funding will provide a further boost and incentive to encourage the use of electric vehicles."
Jesse Norman, Future of Mobility Minister, said: "The government wants all new cars and vans to be effectively zero emission by 2040. Getting the right infrastructure and investment in place is a crucial part of this."
This funding will support almost 4,000 ultra low emission vehicles across the country.
Richard Harrington, Automotive Minister, said: "The UK has led the world in cutting emissions while maintaining growth in our economy.
"These new charge points for greener taxis will help accelerate a cleaner environment for people across the UK. This will also point the way for a better, healthier future for us all as part of the government’s modern Industrial Strategy which builds on the government’s long-standing partnership with the UK automotive sector."
It is estimated that across the East of England, 85 ultra-low emission black cabs and more than 340 ultra-low emission private hire vehicles will benefit from new chargepoints being funded by government, supporting a shift towards cleaner, greener transport.