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Report highlights need for better data to support vehicle decarbonisation

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The effort to reduce carbon emissions from vehicles in urban areas will need improvements in the capture, processing and sharing of data, according to a new report.

The Connected Places Catapult (CPC) has emphasised the point within its Decarbonisng Urban Vehicles study, compiled through interviews with officers from the Urban Transport Group’s member authorities.

It says that at a city-region scale good quality data will play a major role in helping to target investment in electric vehicles (EVs).

The section on data says that city-regions are at the right scale to combine data across sectors such as land use planning, transport forecasts and energy forecasts, and that the relevant authorities could play a key role in developing and supplying the data.

But it acknowledges problems such as gaps in the data and the skills to use it effectively, and the complexity of engaging with the energy connections process and supporting information.

Among the areas in which more granular data is needed are the existing EV charging infrastructure, the underlying electricity grid connections, and places where home charging of EVs will not be possible.

The report also sets out a roadmap detailing how the journey to net zero by 2050 is achieved through each of six themes: people and organisations; policy; infrastructure design; funding and business models; energy generation and distribution; and innovation.

Policy priority

Its overall conclusion is that: The government has made decarbonising vehicle fleets a policy priority and made significant funding available for this task.

“However, the report finds that there is a need for greater cohesion of national policy with less fragmentation between both the approach taken to different transport modes (cars, buses, taxis, new mobility and so on) as well as with the provision of supporting green energy infrastructure.

“If all urban vehicles are to be decarbonised as rapidly and efficiently as possible then there is also a need for government to involve the city regions more closely in the formulation and implementation of policy.”


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