The adoption of low carbon vehicles could enable Birmingham to achieve a 17 per cent reduction in carbon emissions by 2035 according to a new city council-commissioned report.
Birmingham’s Blueprint for Low Carbon Refuelling Infrastructure looks at ways of tackling the issue of air pollution, which contributes to up to 20,000 premature deaths in the UK annually.
The Blueprint could help the council meet its own carbon emissions reduction target of 60 per cent by 2027 (against a 1990 baseline) and contribute towards the UK government’s target of an 80 per cent reduction by 2050.
The report, produced for the council by Element Energy Ltd, outlines the infrastructure improvements that would be needed along with a range of recommendations to address existing barriers to low carbon fuel supply opportunities.
Amongst those suggested to the council in the report are:
- Encourage and contribute to uptake of low carbon vehicles
- Use planning guidance to deliver strategy recommendations for infrastructure
- Work closely with private fleets on demonstration and deployment activities for low carbon vehicles
- Make land available for infrastructure providers
- Streamline planning processes for renewable fuel production and infrastructure
- Include low carbon fuels for transport into the development of energy system strategies
Cllr Lisa Trickett, Cabinet Member for a Green, Smart and Sustainable City, said: “Transport emissions account for just under a quarter of our controllable carbon emissions meaning this is an area we must look to for significant progress on when it comes to our goals for carbon reduction.
“We’ve recently launched Birmingham Connected, our 20-year transport strategy for the city, and that includes a number of ideas such a green travel districts, a rapid transit network of trams and buses along with better facilities for pedestrians and cyclists.
“But we are also pragmatic enough to acknowledge that the privately owned motor vehicle and fleets operated in the public and private sector will still need to exist. Therefore, it’s about looking at how we alter the mix of vehicles on our streets by fuel type.
“We’ve made some progress such as the installation of vehicle charging points and a project to convert taxis to run on LPG – this report clearly shows we have access to alternative fuels to the extent that low-carbon vehicles, local renewable electricity production and bio-methane production could save 260,000 tonnes of CO2 by 2035.
“Now this report has been prepared we will make every effort to make transport cleaner and greener to help tackle poor air quality – one of the biggest risks to public health that we face today.”
Notes to editors
The ‘Birmingham Blueprint’ is funded through the Climate KIC Transition Cities Innovation Programme, an EU project. It can be viewed at www.makingbirminghamgreener.com/blueprint
For more media information contact Kris Kowalewski on 0121 303 3621