The Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has set out ambitious plans to phase out the need for new petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2032, ahead of the 2040 target recently announced by the UK Government.
In the SNP's programme for Government for 2017/18, Sturgeon unveiled plans to expand the nation's electric charging infrastructure to tackle 'range anxiety' for people considering buying an electric car and create Scotland's first 'electric highway' on the A9, with charging points along the route, "demonstrating that electric vehicles offer important advantages to motorists in rural, as well as urban, Scotland". The Scottish Government will also "accelerate the procurement of ultra-low emission vehicles in the public and private sectors, "transforming public sector car and van fleets by the mid-2020s and commercial bus fleets by the early 2030s".
It will also introduce "large scale pilots across the country to encourage the private motorist to use ULEVs," however the programme accepts that "many of the key fiscal levers still rest with the UK Government".
The SNP will also press ahead with plans for a "suitable public body to make a robust bid for the next ScotRail franchise contract and confirm the next steps for the preparation of a bid" in 2017/18; commence work for the second strategic transport projects review in the Dumfries and Galloway area, including an assessment of access to the ports at Cairnryan; and pledged to build "an active nation" by increasing investment in active travel from £40m to £80m per year from 2018/19 while promoting electric bicycles to "ensure as many people as possible can benefit".
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