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According to the Government announcement, 'Covering clean energy, transport, nature and innovative technologies, the Prime Minister’s blueprint will allow the UK to forge ahead with eradicating its contribution to climate change by 2050, particularly crucial in the run up to the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow next year.
The plan – which is part of the PM’s mission to level up across the country - will mobilise £12 billion of government investment to create and support up to 250,000 highly-skilled green jobs in the UK, and spur over three times as much private sector investment by 2030.'
You can read the announcement here, the Ten Point Plan on the Government website includes:
The BBC has reported on the particular element of this plan that focuses on electric vehicles, this is where new cars and vans powered wholly by petrol and diesel will not be sold in the UK from 2030.
- The full story can be viewed here
The Rural Services Network has some concerns over these initiatives and wants to ensure that rural areas are not disadvantaged by these plans but are supported and enabled. There are a number of factors to consider in rural areas for example, trip lengths are generally longer to access services and so there will need to be adequate charging points to suit the transport needs of rural communities. Residents in the most rural areas travel further by car, but less by bus than those in urban areas due to poor rural transport and so using alternative solutions for travel is more difficult.
The Government must ensure that its planned National Bus Strategy has objectives for rural provision, with ambitions to better serve rural communities and their economic needs on a sustainable basis.
In 2018/19 60% of households in rural villages, hamlets and isolated dwellings had 2 or more cars/vans compared to the England average of 35%. This is often due to poor transport links and so there will be an additional financial burden on those rural residents to purchase new suitable vehicles.
The addition there are real challenges for rural homes in terms of energy efficiency of the rural housing stock.
The impact of climate change affects all communities and this much is already clear from the rural impacts of increasingly frequent storm damage, flood events and periods of drought. Rural area which host more than a sixth of England’s population must play their part if the UK is to rapidly reduce its carbon footprint.
|As part of its Revitalising Rural campaign, the RSN has a number of asks of Government for decarbonising rural communities and economies which can be accessed at this link|
In relation to Electric Vehicle Charging, a funded strategy is needed to expand considerably the network of electric public charging points along rural roads. In addition, support for investment relevant to rural buses, HGVs and agricultural vehicles.
Most important, is that rural areas are not left behind in the countdown to climate change targets.
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