SMEs and charities scrapping older vans and minibuses in London can get up to £6k towards the cost of switching to more eco-friendly alternatives.
Intended to complement the existing grants on electric vans – which reduce the cost by up to 20% or a maximum of £8,000 – the scheme is open to microbusinesses – defined as those with 10 or fewer employees – and registered charities who have vans and minibuses that do not comply with the new ULEZ standards. Businesses and charities will have to be registered in London or have been frequently observed driving in the Congestion Charging Zone.
Under the scheme, eligible operators can receive a payment of £6,000 to scrap a non-compliant van or minibus and help with running costs of a new electric vehicle.
They can also opt for a payment of £3,500 to scrap a non-compliant van or minibus which can be used to purchase a newer ULEZ-compliant Euro 6 vehicle or access third-party offers from rental and sharing services across London, including Zipcar, Northgate Hire, Enterprise and Europcar. Or the funds can be used to support ongoing business operations.
The Mayor is also calling on ministers to fund a national scrappage scheme and is also urging them to match fund the £48m pledged for the London car and vans schemes through the Government’s £220m National Clean Air Fund or Highways England’s £75m air quality fund.
Sadiq Khan said: “With six weeks to go until the Ultra Low Emission Zone starts in central London many Londoners are looking at ways to change to cleaner transport options.
“Air pollution is now widely recognised as a national health crisis that is stunting the lung development of our children and leading to thousands of premature deaths. We need government ministers to help fund a national scrappage scheme targeted at cities across the UK that will support all motorists to ditch their polluting cars, and help clean our filthy air once and for all.”
The news of the scheme has been welcomed by the British Vehicle Rental & Leasing Association (BVRLA). Chief executive Gerry Keaney said: “The vehicle rental, leasing and car club industry will play a vital role in delivering the transition to cleaner urban transport and we are delighted to see some of our members stepping-up to pledge their own support for the Mayor’s scrappage scheme.
“This initiative will provide vital and timely assistance for SMEs that need to upgrade their vans ahead of the London ULEZ being introduced on 8th April. London has set an ambitious timeline for its clean air zone and the Mayor has recognised the fact that some businesses will need financial support in upgrading their vehicles. We welcome the leadership he has shown in calling for a national scrappage fund that can be used to help urban businesses and residents switch to cleaner vehicles or other modes of transport.”
For more details on the van scrappage scheme, click here.