Apparently, there’s a throw-down in the UK between Birmingham, Cambridge, Coventry, Dundee, Nottingham, Oxford, Sheffield, and West Yorkshire, the remaining 8 cities vying for £20 million for electric taxis.
There will be more than one winner — though it’s not clear how many — and they will be announced in April 2016.
The final 8 contestants now get funding to conduct feasibility studies for electric taxis and charging infrastructure in their cities.
The funding is coming from the Department for Transport’s Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV).
Of course, electric taxis make a ton of sense and should be adopted ASAP. Air pollution kills millions and millions of people. Even in a city like Amsterdam, known for its high level of bicycling, it has been found that air pollution cuts one year off of residents’ lives, on average. Electric vehicles cut that pollution.
On the purely financial side, driving on electricity is a few times more efficient than driving on petrol. This basically means that operation of an electric vehicle (using it) is much cheaper than operation of a petrol car. The more a person tends to drive, the greater the savings. Obviously, taxi drivers drive a lot, so the potential savings from switching to electricity are humongous.
Add it all up and it seems obvious that we should have electric taxi fleets. It’s good to see the UK moving in this direction, but I hope it and other places hurry up with it! I’m tired of breathing nasty, cancer-causing pollution from the filthy vehicles that cover our streets, taxis included.