A community transport service in Cumnock has received an award of £160,000 from our Green Economy Fund to create a new blueprint for how electric vehicles can be used in rural environments and to support disadvantaged local people in East Ayrshire with the pilot of a new electric minibus.
The funding has enabled Coalfield Community Transport to purchase a zero emissions minibus which will provide accessible, affordable and appropriate community transport solutions for socially and economically disadvantaged people in East Ayrshire. Coalfield Community Transport is expected to reduce its carbon footprints with a reduction of 1.5 tonnes CO2 emissions in the next year.
Coalfield Community Transport is being funded as part of our £20million Green Economy Fund, which supports the UK and Scottish Government’s ambitious plans to meet climate change targets. The fund also aims to boost local economic growth, improve air quality across the country and deliver a better future, quicker for all.
Alongside Coalfield Community Transport, our Green Economy Fund is directly funding six other community organisations across Scotland including Community Transport Glasgow, WAT IF, Glenboig, Cumbernauld Action on Care of the Elderly, Rural Development Trust, Larkhall and Getting Better Together Shotts to allow them to purchase 100% electric vehicles that are low floor accessible. These new all electric fleets will provide transport solutions to assist vulnerable communities, while helping to improve the air quality in the region.
Jillian Violaris, Green Economy Manager at SP Energy Networks, said: “SP Energy Networks is completely committed to working with local communities to create a cleaner, greener, healthier Scotland. That’s why projects like Coalfield Community Transport are at the heart of our Green Economy Fund, which helps communities build their own green economy and establish low carbon infrastructure to support a move to net zero emissions.
“Coalfield Community Transport’s new electric minibus will allow them to play their part in improving East Ayrshire’s air quality while continuing to support disadvantaged people in the local area by providing affordable transport solutions. We are proud to have supported a number of community organisations across Scotland through our Green Economy Fund, which has enabled the purchase of over 40 electric vehicles, other green infrastructure and renewable projects ultimately helping to futureproof our local communities.”
Susan Dever, Project Coordinator at Coalfield Community Transport, said: “By replacing high polluting vehicles with a zero emissions minibus, this project will enable us to address the impact our organisation has on the environment by assessing how electric vehicles perform within a rural environment.
“The new electric minibus will allow us to continue to provide accessible and affordable community transport solutions by operating on a service which serves rural villages where congestion can be problematic. Thanks to SP Energy Networks’ Green Economy Fund, we can further strengthen our social purpose of providing improved air quality to the communities we serve.”
We are part of the ScottishPower group, a Principal Partner for the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) to be held in Glasgow in two months’ time. We are developing an energy model that will play a significant role towards reaching the UK’s world-leading climate change targets and is investing a total of £10billion in the clean energy generation and networks infrastructure needed to help the UK decarbonise and reach Net Zero emissions.
So far, 35 projects have been awarded funding from us across Central and Southern Scotland. Click here to find out more about the Green Economy Fund and the projects it supports.