AA and BT: infrastructure investment needed to support growth of electric vehicle market
A new jointly commissioned report from AA and BT’s Fleet Solutions branch has revealed that UK businesses are expressing a level of concern about the infrastructure investment required to accommodate for the ever-expanding electric vehicle market.
The research conducted has revealed that within five years, 63% of SMEs and businesses expect to be using alternative fuels to power their business vehicles. However, at the same time, nearly half of those surveyed felt that current levels of infrastructure investment coming from government organisations was not adequate to support the market growth.
"Fleets are the backbone of British business, keeping firms on the road and running successfully," said Stuart Thomas, AA’s Head of Fleet and SME.
"In just five years, almost two thirds of fleets are likely to be powered by alternative fuels. In recent days, we have witnessed many of the manufacturers unveiling future electric vehicles or making announcements about a timetable for the electrification of their model line-up.
"We are working closely with businesses to train them to make the most of this electric vehicle (EV) revolution to help them to prevent downtime and loss of income,” Thomas continued.
“We join with the UK's businesses to lobby for greater investment in EV infrastructure to support the alternatively fuelled fleets of the future."
The AA has already trained the entirety of its patrols fleet to be able to assist and service electric vehicles, in addition to joining forces with Chargemaster, the UK’s biggest name electric vehicle charging company, to create a multi-brand electric vehicle centre in Milton Keynes, the first of its kind in the UK.
The centre will both provide information and advice on electric vehicles and offer free driving lessons with AA instructors to help electric vehicle owners get the most out of their automobiles.
Drax advances biomass strategy with Pinnacle acquisition
The Group’s enlarged supply chain will have access to 4.9 million tonnes of operational capacity from 2022. Of this total, 2.9 million tonnes are available for Drax’s self-supply requirements in 2022, which will rise to 3.4 million tonnes in 2027.
The £424 million acquisition of the Canadian biomass pellet producer supports Drax' ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) and will make a "significant contribution" in the UK cutting emissions by 78% by 2035 (click here).
This summer Drax will undertake maintenance on its CfD(2) biomass unit, including a high-pressure turbine upgrade to reduce maintenance costs and improve thermal efficiency, contributing to lower generation costs for Drax Power Station.
In March, Drax secured Capacity Market agreements for its hydro and pumped storage assets worth around £10 million for delivery October 2024-September 2025.
The limitations on BECCS are not technology but supply, with every gigatonne of CO2 stored per year requiring approximately 30-40 million hectares of BECCS feedstock, according to the Global CCS Institute. Nonetheless, BECCS should be seen as an essential complement to the required, wide-scale deployment of CCS to meet climate change targets, it concludes.