Councils turn to ecargo bikes to cut urban air pollution

18 local authorities will share £2m from the government’s eCargo Bike Grant Fund to help reduce air pollution from last-mile deliveries.

Councils across England were invited to bid for up to £200,000 each to purchase the bikes for use by local businesses or deployment within their own fleets.

Additionally, funding was allocated through the fund’s national scheme offering limited companies and organisations up to 20% grant funding towards ecargo bikes.

Cambridgeshire County Council plans to deploy 30 ecargo bikes across four initiatives in Cambridge covering first mile deliveries, a residential sharing scheme, a ‘try before you buy’ leasing scheme and pool ecargo bikes with a combined aim of reducing travel emissions and encouraging active and sustainable transport options. 

Devon County Council will encourage the uptake of ecargo bikes across partner organisations to support sustainable active business travel as an alternative to car and van use.

13 ecargo bikes will also be used to support Exeter’s ambition for net-zero service with two of the total used by the local hospital’s adult and social care teams to help care for the most isolated people in the city.

This fund is available to support the purchase of ecargo bikes operating in England and is funded by the Department for Transport and delivered by Energy Saving Trust.

Tim Anderson, Head of Transport at Energy Saving Trust, said: ‘It is exciting to see the strength and breadth of applications supported by the eCargo Bike Grant Fund. We received 58 applications and the 18 local authorities who have been successful in securing funding offered compelling cases for ecargo bikes across a range of activity.

‘These projects will purchase a total of 273 ecargo bikes and nine ecargo bike trailers, enabling more businesses to benefit from access. A further 409 ecargo bikes have been grant funded direct to 146 organisations through the national element of the programme.’

Photo Credit – Energy Saving Trust

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