An Energy and Climate Change Committee report – published today, reflects evidence provided by the Freight Transport Association – outlining the immense pressure the freight sector is under to reduce emissions.
In its 2020 renewable heat and transport targets report the Committee says that although HGVs must be decarbonised, electrification – even in the long term is unlikely, stating that the Government must ensure HGV operators are sufficiently supplied and incentivised to move to biomethane over the medium-to-long term.
FTA gave evidence to the Committee in June outlining the key issues that are preventing the sector from utilising renewable fuels such as biomethane. As a result the Committee has warned that the UK is set to miss 2020 renewable energy targets without a significant step change to encourage more renewable transport.
Commenting on the report Christopher Snelling – FTA Head of National and Regional Policy, who provided evidence to the Committee said: “This report provides clear evidence that Government must review its current policy on renewable transport fuels. Whilst the UK must meet renewable energy targets, the freight sector is also under enormous pressure to reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality, but we need the policies in place to make alternatives feasible.”
The proportion of renewable transport actually fell last year meaning that the challenge of decarbonising transport is getting even tougher.
Current Government policies such as the Renewable Heat Incentive provide a much greater incentive for biomethane producers to inject into the grid for electricity and heating, rather than further upgrading the biomethane for use as a transport fuel.
Mr Snelling added: “A greater proportion of Office for Low Emission Vehicles funding is also required for the freight sector if the UK is to meet the renewable energy targets. Lack of refuelling infrastructure and added expense of alternatives makes the business case extremely difficult for operators.”
Details of the FTA Logistics Carbon Reduction Scheme (LCRS) can be found at: www.fta.co.uk/lcrs