Infrastructure Minister Nichola Mallon has signed the Glasgow Declaration on Zero Emission Cars and Vans, on behalf of the Northern Ireland Executive.
The Minister is also chairing an expert panel discussion today for Transport Day at COP 26, which will explore the innovation and business opportunities arising from the transition to zero emission vehicles.
Minister Mallon said:
“This is a critical announcement for governments, businesses, and other organisations with an influence over the future of the automotive industry and road transport. I am pleased to sign this declaration to show that Northern Ireland has endorsed this COP26 declaration on accelerating the transition to 100% zero emission cars and vans.
"Together, we are committing to rapidly accelerating the transition to zero emission vehicles, to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement, by agreeing that we will work towards all sales of new cars and vans being zero emission by no later than 2035.
"Across these islands, we have already seen significant innovation in transport decarbonisation. Specifically in relation to zero emission vehicles, key investment in innovative projects is delivering new vehicle and infrastructure technologies. These projects are providing economic benefits such as job creation and are unlocking private investment to support new technologies to come to market."
The Minister also highlighted the progress that is already being made in public transport sector. She said:
“Last week, I unveiled the first of 80 battery electric double decker buses due to be in passenger service in Northern Ireland next spring. These buses will be the first double-decker buses in service on the island of Ireland and is part of my £74million investment for 100 zero emission buses, which also includes 20 Hydrogen fuelled buses and a programme of associated infrastructure works. In addition, on 3 November, I was delighted to announce my £30m investment for 38 battery electric buses for the Foyle Metro service in Derry. This significant leap will see the city’s entire urban fleet replaced with electric buses making it one of the first cities across these islands to have a fully zero-emission bus fleet when all the vehicles go into passenger service in 2023. These are the changes we need to see to help us tackle climate change and contribute to better health outcomes for all our population.”
Today is the first of a three day visit for Minister Mallon to COP26. She also visited the Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful and Belfast City Council stands.
“It is an honour to be here at COP26 to play my part working with leaders across these islands and across the globe to tackle the climate crisis. I look forward to and will embrace all the opportunities for collaboration and innovation this historic and important occasion presents us with. The time for action on climate change is now and while we have made some steps there is still much more to do. We need to get on with it now.”
Notes to editors:
- The panel discussion chaired by Minister Mallon included representatives from SSE, Hitachi Europe, the National Grid and Faraday Battery Challenge.
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