Chapter 7.2.5 Electric vehicles

Provide funding for EVs for community transport

Transport Scotland and local government should scale-up funding for local community organisations and projects to purchase electric vehicles, decarbonise their fleets and empower local people to take climate action.

UK Govt
Scottish Govt
Local Authorities
Emissions reduction
Behaviour change

Community Transport is always for a social purpose and never for a profit. Over 170 local charities, community groups and social enterprises are delivering accessible and sustainable transport services and projects in urban, rural and island communities across Scotland where the public transport system has failed. Community Bus Services, community car clubs and active travel projects are empowering local people to change behaviours, reduce emissions and reduce private car use.

Despite challenging times and an historic lack of investment, the community transport sector is leading the way – 12% of the sector’s national fleet is electric, compared to just 2% of all road vehicles in Scotland. However, the sector faces a serious ‘net zero funding gap’, as the higher upfront capital costs of EVs are prohibitive for most operators. Recent research estimates that £87.4m of investment is likely to be required to decarbonise the sector. Transport Scotland, as well as local government, need to invest to close this gap.

This policy helps make sure that older people, disabled people, rural communities and others are not left behind on Scotland’s journey to net zero.

For further information:

Version 1.0: September 2023

The contents of this document will be updated on a regular basis.