A NEW REPORT has revealed Wychavon district experienced sluggish growth in Ultra Low Emission Vehicles (ULEV) between 2018 and 2019, leaving it second from bottom in a national league table.
The area recorded just a 6.8 per cent increase in the number of vehicles registered in the last 12 months with 474 ULEVs registered in 2019, compared to 444 in 2018.
Information released from a Freedom of Information request by motorway.co.uk showed Wychavon finished ahead of only Sunderland which recorded a 6.5 per cent rise.
Exeter came top of the poll after registering 1,194 ULEVs in 2019, compared to 464 in 2018.
ULEV describes any vehicle which uses low carbon technologies, emits less than 75g of CO2/km from the exhaust and is capable of operating in zero tailpipe emission zone for a range of at least ten miles.
ULEVs range from pure electric vehicles and fuel cell electric vehicles, to plug-in hybrids and extended range electric vehicles.
Alex Buttle from motorway.co.uk said with Britain leaving the EU and the focus returning to domestic matters the Goverment had its part to play as well.
“With consumer confidence low and with the domestic auto industry suffering, is now the time for the Government to introduce electric vehicle purchase subsidies to help consumers make the leap to electric?”
In response, Wychavon District Council leader Coun Bradley Thomas said the figures had to be treated cautiously as although the percentage increase was small, the number of ULEVs in Wychavon was larger than some of the areas being praised for having the fastest growth.
“If we go back a little further and compare the figures in the third quarter of 2019 to the same period in 2016 then Wychavon has seen a 58 per cent growth in ULEVs registered in the district.
“What we can say with confidence is we are seeing growth in the number of ULEVs on Wychavon’s roads.
“Ultimately the decision on whether or not to invest in one will be down to the individual and based on factors such as price and any national incentive schemes coming forward and that will be down to the car industry and Government to decide.
“We will continue to do all we can to encourage people to switch by installing additional car charging points in our car parks, converting our own fleet to electric vehicles and working with the private sector to support the construction of EV charging forecourts and other infrastructure,” he added.