Scotland funds e-bikes with half a million pounds
The Scottish government is serving the second round of its eBike Grant Fund designed to help organisations, universities and communities to purchase e-bikes. A total of £462,000 (526,925 euros) will go into buying new e-bikes, including electric cargo bikes.
Scotland will allocate the close to half a million pounds for pedal-assist bikes to a total of 27 organisation that will together buy 258 new pedelecs, among them six cargo e-bikes.
The largest beneficiaries of the current funding round include the Dundee City Council (50 e-bikes, £100,000), Transport for Edinburgh (37 e-bikes, £118,198) and the Wheatley Group (15 e-bikes, £16,953).
For Scotland, it is building upon efforts from June 2018 when they launched the first eBike Grant Fund worth 700,000 pounds. At the same time, the government set up a fund for private persons and businesses as well. The Low Carbon Transport Loan Fund made £500,000 available for interest-free loans of up to £3,000 to support the purchase of electric bikes and e-cargo bikes.
The eBike Grant Fund, however, is exclusively for health organisations, community projects and tertiary institutions to make pedelecs available for distances between commonly travelled locations, including bringing local farming produce to market.
Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity Michael Matheson was encouraged by the response to the first round of grants, and reasons that “there are so many benefits to e-bikes and e-cargo bikes, but for many, the latest advances in e-mobility technology remain unaffordable. While we all anticipate price drops in the future, I’m committed to ensuring that people can access and experience e-bikes in their communities.”
Overall, Scotland is working towards phasing out combustion-powered cars by 2032 reportedly. In preparation, the country has recently mobilised millions again, both for infrastructure as well as electric vehicles of all kinds.
Additional reporting by Nora Manthey.