Kirklees Committed to Greener Future
Electric vehicle use within Kirklees underpins our plans for both the Climate Emergency and air quality improvements. We are currently partnered with the other four West Yorkshire Authorities and West Yorkshire Combined Authority on the delivery of the strategic taxi and public rapid charging network.
Across 17 sites, we have installed 12 chargers, have a further five planned installations and will be delivering an additional four chargers in 2021. This will bring the total to 21 chargers across the district. We have previously partnered with hospitals and the hotel industry in the district, which resulted in the installation of 17 chargers at 15 different sites.
We have the ambition to be a leader in the Electric Vehicles and Charging Infrastructure and to achieve this ambition, are working on an evidence based Electric Vehicle Strategy for the district to ensure local needs are met. The recently employed, Regional West Yorkshire Low Emission Officer will work collaboratively with West Yorkshire authorities to deliver local and regional air quality projects and to update the West Yorkshire Low Emission Strategy.
In addition to policy, we have backed this aim financially by investing £2million towards public infrastructure and its own fleet. £1million of this funding will be used to deliver an additional 20 rapid chargers and 20 fast chargers. This investment will make possible the move to an Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (ULEV) fleet, will encourage residents to make the switch to electric and will attract visitors knowing they can access a network of unrestricted vehicle charge points.
Our fleet has already made strides in the move to greener vehicles with 20 electric cars, five electric vans and 50 hybrid cars currently in use plus 35 electric vans recently ordered. Alternative propulsion options are being explored, alongside electric, for the HGVs they operate, such as Hydrogen-powered vehicles.
Councillor Paul Davies, Cabinet Member for Culture and Greener Kirklees, said:
“As a council we are absolutely committed to delivering a network of electric vehicle charge points across Kirklees and ensuring we demonstrate leadership by converting our council fleet and equipment to ULEV equivalents.
We believe that this move and allowing access to free parking whilst charging, will give residents the confidence to switch to ULEV. ULEV are the future and compared to petrol/diesel equivalents will greatly contribute to improvements in air quality so it’s right that we encourage as many people as we can to make the switch by offering the infrastructure needed to enable change.
Together we can improve local air quality and contribute to a low carbon future within a cleaner and greener Kirklees’’
Outside of our own capital investment, all new building developments, with parking, that have applied for planning permission within Kirklees are required to have charging points for electric vehicles installed. This practice has been standard since 2014 and is included within the Local Plan policy to ensure green, sustainable development within the district.
Our commitment to ULEV is not new, Kirklees were one of the first West Yorkshire authorities to offer free parking to all ULEV car users, within selected car parks, from 2008; inspiring other neighbouring authorities to do the same.
You can find out more about our response to the Climate Emergency on our website Kirklees Climate Emergency.