Cycling Federation slams electric car subsidies

Governments come under fire for providing millions to back the e-car industry
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The European Cyclists’ Federation (ECF) has blasted the increasing number of governments that are providing backing to the electric car industry.

Earlier this week German chancellor Angela Merkel announced the German cabinet’s support for the electric car industry, aiming to have one million electric cars on the roads by 2020 with a €2 billion investment for R&D in the sector.

The ECF said the ‘one million e-car by 2020’ target was insubstantial in a country that has 42 million cars on the road, so electric cars would only represent two per cent of the market share.

The federation also pointed out that Germany already has around one million electric vehicles on the roads in the form of e-bikes.

“The decision to provide subsidies makes no economic, environmental or moral sense,” said Dr Bernhard Ensink, ECF secretary general. “Lack of infrastructure still remains an expensive barrier, electricity need to run the car still produces Co2 emissions and they have failed to address the issue of equal access to public space, including pedestrians and bicycles.”

The ECF, Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth Germany and the Nature and Biodiversity Conservation Union have raised doubts over the environmental credentials of electric cars.

The International Transport Forum in Leipzig takes place next week, where the ECF will continue to raise its protests over the backing of electric cars as the answer to future transport problems.

The Scottish Government is among those providing tax-payers cash for the electric car industry. Westminster also decided to provide £5,000 for those buying e-cars.

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