14 Apr 2009 05:04:27
UK electric car push requires renewables focus
British prime minister Gordon Brown's recent comments suggesting an increased government focus on promoting electric cars have been welcomed by the Renewable Energy Association (REA).
Speaking ahead of the publication of the new budget (due to be unveiled on April 22nd), Mr Brown told the Independent that the government will announce a string of incentives to help the UK become a leader on low carbon transport.
The REA responded positively to the words of the prime minister, but suggested that the push for electric vehicles must be tied to a "strategic expansion" in the renewable energy market if it is to succeed in lowering emissions.
"This move is only as green as the electricity that charges the batteries," explained Gaynor Hartnell, director of policy at the association.
He suggested that the measure would only be successful if the government worked closely with the renewable electricity, network infrastructure and car manufacturing industries.
The REA also called for the budget - which is being billed as the greenest yet - to address issues facing the UK renewables industry, which has struggled like others to secure financing for new initiatives during the recession.
Meanwhile, the European Union's eurostat service revealed last month that 22 percent of the UK's municipal waste was recycled in 2007.http://www.r-e-a.net/policy