UK Electric Fleets Coalition

The Climate Group is delighted to announce the launch of an innovative new partnership, the UK Electric Fleets Coalition, with founding member BT Group - including Openreach, a wholly owned subsidiary of BT Group and the UK’s leading digital network business which manages one of the UK’s largest commercial fleets.

The UK Electric Fleets Coalition will convene a leadership coalition to advocate for accelerating the transition to electric vehicles (EVs) in the UK ahead of the currently postponed COP26 climate summit in 2021.

Transport is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the UK and roadside air pollution causes thousands of premature deaths every year. A rapid transformation of the UK’s vehicle stock from internal combustion engine (ICE) to electric is a vital part of the solution for net-zero emissions and clean air.

Business has a major role to play in driving the necessary change – with companies brought together by The Climate Group’s EV100 initiative leading the way. As a major fleet operator, BT Group including Openreach is using its purchasing power to send a powerful signal to auto manufacturers demanding change. They are also supporting the transition to net-zero emissions through measures such as providing easy-access charging points for both employees and customers. Initiatives like this not only drive change but give governments confidence that a faster transition is feasible.

The new partnership will undertake a vital leadership role, communicating the benefits of their experience to help design policy measures that support corporate EV uptake, such as stimulating EV supply and investing in EV charging.

BT Group is already an international leader when it comes to action on climate change and has pledged to become a net zero carbon emissions business by 2045.    

Philip Jansen, BT Group Chief Executive, said: “We have an outstanding record in reducing carbon emissions and have plans to be a net zero emissions business by 2045. The switch to low and zero emissions vehicles is a key element in our carbon strategy and this new partnership will be critical in allowing us to make the switch. We hope that this coalition will help drive the necessary bold action from other businesses and policymakers needed to transition to the low carbon economy.”  

Clive Selley, CEO, Openreach said: “With the country’s second largest fleet of vans, I want Openreach to play a leading role in the UK’s transition to low carbon vehicles. But there are still some major hurdles to overcome. For example, the kinds of vehicles, scale of manufacturing, supply-chains and infrastructure needed to electrify large fleets like ours simply doesn’t exist today. So we need Government support to make the transition faster and fuller, and the commitment to maintaining plug-in grants is a welcome first step.”

Helen Clarkson, CEO, The Climate Group said: “We are delighted to be launching this project with BT Group and Openreach, who are businesses that demonstrate true climate action. By coming together as a collective voice, businesses such as our EV100 members can achieve more than alone. As a coalition, the UK Electric Fleets Coalition will show policymakers the appetite for ambitious EV policies and inspire outcomes that will make the transition to electric vehicles faster.”

Companies interested in more information about the UK Electric Fleets Coalition should contact EV100@theclimategroup.org

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