Scotland budgets £28m to foster niche heavy-duty ZEVs (ZEMIF)

The Scottish Government is providing £28 million (€32.6Mn) across the next four years to accelerate the manufacturing and deployment of heavy-duty zero-emission vehicles. The Zero Emission Mobility Innovation Fund (ZEMIF) comprises two component funds and was designed with input from the industry.

ZEMIF will support components and systems, with an initial focus on niche and heavy-duty vehicles, as well as the deployment of zero-emission technologies, the Scottish Government states.

The two component funds, Innovation2Manufacture and Innovation2Deployment, are designed for different stage developments.

Up to £5m a year will support Scottish manufacturers with a proof-of-concept ZE vehicle, component or system that is moving towards low-volume manufacturing.
Those dealing in deployment may apply for up to £2m from an annual pot to support private sector end-users to deliver projects that utilise new-to or close-to-market technology, to the statement.

As examples of the Innovation2Manufacture funding, Scotland lists a new manufacturing process for a zero-emission refuse collection vehicle, new tooling to support fuel cell development for niche light commercial vehicles, and a project to test and manufacture transport technology developed at a university innovation centre or test facility.

Example projects in the Innovation2Deployment include trialling pre-market deployment of retrofit technology to decarbonise niche vehicles or support the testing and demonstration of pre-market ZEVs by an operator.

The extensity of the lists may underscore that the funds have been developed in close collaboration with industry leaders in Scotland’s Zero Emission Mobility Industry Advisory Group (ZEM IAG), established in 2019.

Ben Todd from Ballard Motive Solutions, co-chair of the Group, welcomed the fund’s creation “as a key priority from our stakeholder engagement,” he said. “It will provide focused support for innovators to scale up their manufacturing capability in Scotland as well as support for developing and testing new technologies.”

“It is an opportunity for Scotland to showcase its strengths in this area with hubs such as the Michelin Scotland Innovation Parc to companies such as Alexander Dennis and Emergency One already highlighting how Scotland can take the right route to sustainable mobility,” added Derek Shaw, Scottish Enterprise Director of Innovation and Place.

Scotland’s Minister for Transport Jenny Gilruth added the LOCATE drive train test facility, the Eden Centre at the University of St Andrews and the Driving the Electric Revolution Scotland Industrialisation Centre to the list of incubators that businesses may benefit from.

The Zero Emission Mobility Innovation Fund (ZEMIF) is delivered in partnership with Scottish Enterprise. No timeline or process has yet been published.


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