The Midlands will play a fundamental role in delivering Government ambitions to decarbonise transport

Date posted: July 14, 2021
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A white hella lorry drives down a road bordered by green trees

The Midlands Engine welcomes the launch today [14 July] of the Government’s transport decarbonisation plan.

This plan is of huge significance to the Midlands, which sees the highest amount of road freight in the UK, 45% of rail freight and 30% of lorry freight – and comes at a time when Midlands Engine partners are already mobilising urgent action around our Ten Point Plan for Green Growth.

The Ten Point Plan for Green Growth in the Midlands Engine prioritises the need to decarbonise transport, including HGVs which cause 21% of road-based transport carbon emissions in the Midlands, compared with 17% nationally.

As the UK leader in freight and logistics, our region is taking a pioneering role in decarbonising heavy transport, including a recent bid to Innovate UK to lead on a national HGV freight demonstrator for hydrogen.

Home of the UK automotive industry, the Midlands is in the vanguard of low carbon transport innovation, including battery electric vehicles and fuel cell technology, with substantive supply chains and complex logistics.

Handling over 320,000 tonnes of flown cargo every year, East Midlands Airport is the UK’s busiest pure cargo airport and, alongside Humber ports, one of two proposed Freeports to be sited in the Midlands.

Our region’s world-class automotive supply chain employs more than 293,000 people and we are home to seven volume car manufacturers, seven commercial vehicle manufacturers and 16 of the world’s top automotive suppliers, including Toyota, Jaguar Land Rover and Aston Martin Lagonda and with the proposed battery Gigafactory in the West Midlands, the whole of the supply chain underpinning the scale-up of electric vehicle manufacturing will be based within our region,

The actions highlighted in the Ten Point Plan for Green Growth in the Midlands Engine, which has been co-created by partners across our region, have the potential to accelerate UK Government ambitions to accelerate the shift to zero emission public, private and industrial vehicles – at the same time as protecting jobs in the Midlands, boosting our region’s export potential and driving down CO2 and NOx emissions.

Responding to the launch of the Government plan, Rachael Greenwood, Executive Director, Midlands Engine said: 

We welcome the Government’s transport decarbonisation plan which aligns so closely with our own recently launched Ten Point Plan for Green Growth in the Midlands Engine – co-created by over 300 partners from right across the Midlands and setting out how our Partnership can and will drive a greener, cleaner and better future for today’s and tomorrow’s generations. We are mobilising now to deliver our Plan and look forward to working with the Government on this mutual priority for our region and country.

Maria Machancoses, Chief Executive Officer of Midlands Connect said:

This decisive strategy is what we’ve been waiting for, and demonstrates Government’s commitment to building a cleaner, greener and more sustainable transport network. Policymakers must now work with industry and the private sector to develop a comprehensive delivery plan to make sure change happens.

For the latest on our region, subscribe to Midlands Matters, the official newsletter of the Midlands Engine.
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