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Green Number Plates - Good Idea?


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Yes, the proposal is to use ANPR for enforcement. The green number plates are purely for show and may be voluntary rather than madatory.
They can't mandate that all existing owners buy new plates, so have no choice really. Only other option is some sort of sticker like in California, but might be difficult to put on existing plate (goes on car in CA).

As others have said this is rather pathetic tinkering rather than sorting genuine low emission transport issues.
 

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The country is falling apart and government is faffing about with a cosmetic change for cars. I really do worry about the mental capacity of those in charge.

What about laws making renewable energy a requirement for new builds, making them gas free for heating and cooking, what about requiring new substations to be built with battery storage, or encouraging more renewables as a whole.
What about giving free solar panels and heat storage to poor households to help with fuel poverty.
Totally agree - electric or ICE, it's still a car on the road causing traffic. Grant needs to go back to the drawing board on this one and start proposing things like subsidies of public transport to get people out of cars full stop.
 

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To save people clicking through, here's the full list of questions (read the document to understand what they mean):
Eligibility

Q1a: Do you agree with our proposal that only zero emission vehicles would be eligible for green number plates?
Q1b: If you disagree, explain why, including what requirement you think would be suitable?

Design

Q2a: Do you agree with our proposal that the green number plate design should be restricted to the left hand side of the number plate?
Q2b: If you disagree, explain why, including what you think would be more suitable?
Q3a: For the design on the left hand side of the number plate, do you think this should be: • a green flash? • a green symbol? • something else?
Q3b: Specify other ideas for the design using the left hand side of the plate
Q4a: Should the left hand design be displayed in addition to national flags and lettering that can occupy that area of the plate?
Q5a: What other views and reasoning on the design of the green number plates do you feel should be considered Rollout and approach
Q6a: Do you agree with our proposal that the green number plates should not be mandatory?
Q6b: If you disagree, explain why, including what you think would be more suitable?
Q6b: Do you agree with our proposal that the green number plates should be opt-out?
Q6c: If you disagree, explain why, including what you think would be more suitable?
Q7a: Do you agree that after the introduction of the plates both new and existing qualifying vehicles will be able to access them?
Q7b: If you disagree, explain why, including what you think would be more suitable?
Q8a: Do you agree that green number plates should be open to qualifying cars, vans, taxis and motorbikes, but that buses, coaches and HGVs are out of scope?
Q8b: If you disagree, explain why, including what you think would be more suitable? 24

Enforcement
Q9a: Do you agree with our proposal to seek a light touch scheme that can be implemented more quickly so as to capture the emerging vehicle market?
Q9b: If you disagree, explain why, including what you think would be more suitable?
Q10a: Do you agree with our proposal that the scheme should fit into the existing regulatory and enforcement landscape around the supply and display of eligible plates?
Q10b: If you disagree, explain why, including what you think would be more suitable?
Q11a: Do you agree that the visual characteristics of green number plates should only serve as a soft enforcement mechanism?
Q11b: If you disagree, explain why, including what you think would be more suitable?
Q12: Please provide any other views around the expected cost of implementing this policy
Q13: Any other comments?
Yes, they really do have two question 6b's.
 

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Policy should be aimed at what will really promote EVs.

Is there anyone here who would rather have a green number plate instead of a usable charging network?

Perks like driving in Bus Lanes and free parking will be temporary at best. Once EVs take off, they will end. Worse, people will be upset when the freebies are pulled.
 

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TBH, I prefer having the EU flag and GB on the left-hand side of my number plate ;)

This is clearly the wrong way around. ICE cars should have dayglo pink plates and this international hazard sign displayed prominently:

 

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The only reason to make them green is public awareness and visiblity. However I fear a certain level of resentment/jealously , that "oh why do they get to park there..." etc leading to people damaging your car.
 

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I submitted a response to the consultation.


Excerpts from my response to the consultation:


Q12. Do you agree with our proposal that the green number plates should not be mandatory?
Yes


Q14. Do you agree with our proposal that the green number plates should be opt-out?
No

Q15. Why not, including what requirement you think would be suitable?
Green number plates should be opt-in.

Battery electric vehicle owners and drivers who want green number plates should request them. This is already the case for other specialised marks like national flags.

Q16. Do you agree that green number plates should be available to:
YesNoDon't know?
cars​
X​
vans​
X​
taxis​
X​
motorbikes​
X​
Why?
I am opposed the the green number plate scheme. I have been driving a fully electric car since 2014. The single and most important obstacle to uptake is the avalibilty of public charging. The UK's public charging infrastructure is not fit for purpose. - It isn't even good enough for the handful of electric cars on the road now. It can not possibly support a large number of EVs. Minor perks like driving in bus lanes are not the answer. Making EVs stand out may help slightly but is not a solution.


Q20. Do you agree with our proposal to seek a light touch scheme that can be implemented more quickly so as to capture the emerging ULEV market?
No


Against the light touch approach
Q21. Why not, including what approach you think would be suitable with your reasons?
We desperately need charing infrastructure to support EVs.

Car owners without a garage or drive need to be able to charge their cars where they park over night. This is the single most important issue restricting EV take up.

The UK needs a much better en-route charging network. The current patchwork system is not fit for purpose. Rapid chargers are not well placed. Many of them were installed using grant money but with no mechanism for repair. Far too many charge points are not working.

Q26. What are your views, if any, about the expected cost of implementing this policy?
This policy is not the best use of tax payer money.

I am an enthusiastic EV owner and have been since 2014.

I am disappointed by the slow uptake of EVs in the UK. We desperately need a joined-up charging network. There needs to be widespread availability of AC charger points where cars are parked, especially overnight.

The long distance rapid charger network is not fit for purpose. This makes long trips that should be possible in today's EVs impractical and frustrating.
 

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However I fear a certain level of resentment/jealously , that "oh why do they get to park there..." etc leading to people damaging your car.
Agree. I don't want my car to stand out at all.

For those who approve of the green number plate scheme, please respond to the survey that green plates should be opt-in and not mandatory or opt-out. In other words EV drivers would request a green number plate.
 

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Policy should be aimed at what will really promote EVs.

Is there anyone here who would rather have a green number plate instead of a usable charging network?

Perks like driving in Bus Lanes and free parking will be temporary at best. Once EVs take off, they will end. Worse, people will be upset when the freebies are pulled.
Of course everyone would prefer a decent charging network. But that costs money.

Green number plates cost the government nothing and allow them to be seen to promote electric cars. Job done.

I would still have them, though, because I think that they will have a positive PR effect for BEVs
 

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IMO the supposed benefits aren't real.

1. Allow drivers to show that they are taking a sustainable approach to driving.
They can already do that by choosing an EV, or by adding a sticker.
For some people, standing out isn't a benefit due to risk of crime.

2. Will likely give them access to low emission lanes.
These lanes do not exist. So really I think we're talking about bus lanes.
Buses use bus lanes though, and we're trying to encourage people to use public transport. So to increase traffic in bus lanes is a contradictory policy.
This policy is unsustainable. If 10 people use a bus lane, OK. If 100 people use a bus lane, OK. If 1,000 people use a bus lane, erm.. If 10,000 people use a bus lane, nope. If everyone uses a bus lane, rip bus lanes. The policy will inevitably have to be reversed.

3. Access to dedicated low-emission zones.
Perhaps, but there's a choice here. If removing 90% of the traffic from an area, wouldn't we rather pedestrianise it?
There will never be a better time to pedestrianise an area.

Edit:
Picture 10 years ago the American Prius driver passing everyone in the zero emissions lane, thinking himself better than others, and being resented by everyone he overtakes. If we did that here, there's a real risk of EVs getting hate, causing people to avoid that being directed at them.
 

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Slight problem with further pedestrianisation is that most councils have done it already. The problem is access to affordable parking so you can reach them, or public transport that is reliable and cheap. Look at what is happening to many city / town centres - they are dying because people would rather order on the Internet than pay the cost / inconvenience of trying to shop in a lot of city / town centres.
Might make more sense to trial this on delivery vans allowing green ones free access to localities and charging ICE ones.
Overall I think green number plates are a bit of a side show. Sort out the charging infrastructure first and offer interest free loans for private car buyers (like in Scotland). Help car manufacturers build a battery factory and battery recycling plants etc etc
 

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The funny thing about this... is that only the 3rd one is accessible. For those who are colour blind or partially sighted, the first two may be indistinguishable from a normal plate, whereas the 3rd also uses shape. I would be amazed (I'm not amazed) that the paper doesn't cover this important detail. What about traffic wardens who have vision impairments?

Awareness is good, it's one of the reasons I want to be part of the EV world - to raise awareness. But this could also create the low emission vehicle resentment you see in the US with the LEV 'zil' lanes. Bonus benefits from having EVs (such as parking) are important in the short term, but everyone should still ground themselves with: EVs still create traffic, and traffic still creates emissions.

Really, there should be money being pumped into charging infrastructure as the first priority, as that is what will truly give EV positive PR.
 

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Green number plates cost the government nothing and allow them to be seen to promote electric cars. Job done.
it will cost money in administration of the scheme and in the costs for number plate companies having to stock more than two colours.
It also has an environmental impact as the companies making the blank number plates will have to deal with another waste stream of the green colour materials, as well as potentially ending up with yellow and white number plates they can’t sell if they over estimate the number of ICE cars.
How clear will the number plate be to those with differing vision?

As I’ve said previously, there’s no issue with demand for electric cars, they’re selling faster than manufacturers can make them. Government should be investing their time making choices now that will make the future transition a smooth one, not consulting us about a colour scheme.
Standardising smart grid and charging technology so we don’t have to keep replacing stuff if it’s not compatible with other tech.

we could have the prettiest number plates in the world for our EVs, but if we can’t charge them then what’s the point?
 

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One of the things about the visual identifier that I think could help is that it’ll start conversations (between friends and neighbours, within families etc) that I think could start to change minds. I’m struggling to see how that could be a bad thing.

If it also gives an easy way of seeing whether people are parked in the right place then that’s all to the good too. I’m that respect it doesn’t replace ANPR but it could still help.

I prefer the look of the all green plate but I’m not too bothered what they go for as long as it’s zero emissions.
 

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TBH, I prefer having the EU flag and GB on the left-hand side of my number plate ;)
Although if Boris gets his way, unfortunately you won't have the option. Any UK number plate with the EU logo on would need replacing.

Still, at least there'll be a business opportunity for someone to produce little green stick on squares to cover up the logo. I think I've found the one industry which will benefit from Brexit!
 

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I agree with points about accessibility, visual impairment etc.
I presume they propose changing the colour only is to avoid breaking existing ANPR systems.
IMO ANPR is mostly abused by evil parking companies so breaking it would be lulzy.
 

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The intent here, as with most government 'green' schemes is to show a benefit that they can point to without costing them a penny. The clue is that the green plates will entitle EVs to drive in special lanes and get free parking - so all costs to councils, not central government.
 

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why green though, should have suggested a subtle blue stripe or outline! seeing a lot of EV's have a subtle blue to them.
Ok I am being completely and utterly selfish here and thinking about what would look better on the car !
 
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