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Perry E Hopper e scooter

Legalising e-scooters could save more than 44,000 tonnes of CO2 a year according to Move Electric

Published: 09 Dec 2021

Legalising e-scooters for use on public roads could help save more than 44,000 tonnes of CO2 a year in the UK – equivalent to the annual emissions from 29,000 cars*. More than one in five drivers would consider replacing short car journeys with an e-scooter, according to new research by e-mobility champion and consumer expert, Move Electric.

As part of an industry study of 5,078 vehicle owners, Move Electric found 22% of motorists would consider swapping their car for an e-scooter on journeys less than a mile long if e-scooters were legalised.

According to Department for Transport data, 0.43% of all car journeys in the UK are under a mile long, equating to 29.1 miles worth of trips for every car in the UK each year. If 22% of drivers were to replace these journeys with an e-scooter, the carbon dioxide savings would equate to 44,261 tonnes, the equivalent of 821 Olympic-sized swimming pools every month.

Currently, e-scooters are only allowed to be used on private land or within specific Local Authority trial areas. While 45% of drivers surveyed were in favour of legalising e-scooters, 79% of those supporting their legalisation would like to see them taxed and insured before riders can operate them.

Research by Move Electric also found 42% of all respondents surveyed believe e-scooters are a viable solution in helping cities and urban areas reduce air pollution. Awareness of Local Authority trials for e-scooters was also found to be high, with 86% of respondents aware they can only be operated on private land or within trial scheme areas.

James Attwood, editor, Move Electric, said: "The Government is currently helping Local Authorities in the UK to run e-scooter trials to understand how they could be incorporated within the existing transport network. While some drivers remain sceptical of e-scooter use, already one-in-five would consider replacing short car journeys with one.

"Though car journeys under a mile account for a fraction of total miles driven, replacing them with an e-scooter could help reduce local air pollution. With one in five drivers already interested in making the switch, this alone could save more than 44,000 tonnes of CO2 a year, equivalent to taking more than 29,000 cars off the road.

“While it is important that the Government considers both the safety of e-scooters and issues such as tax and insurance, as the UK moves towards more sustainable transport solutions they should remain in the conversation on possible ways to improve local air quality.”

Using cars for short journeys is especially inefficient for petrol and diesel models, as internal combustion engines only reach peak efficiency once their advanced CO2 cleansing technologies reach their optimum operating temperature, which can take minutes. As a result, on journeys of under a mile, their engines have the potential to be much less efficient.


Notes to Editors




11x 02 Arenas

Monthly saving

821x Olympic-sized swimming pools

Weekly saving

102x Big Bens

Daily saving

1007x 40ft shipping containers

*Based on 25 degree temperature and one atmosphere pressure

*The average emissions across all registered vehicles in the UK is 138.4g/km CO2

While the share of journeys under a mile conducted in a car or van is 0.428%

The annual mileage per car driver is 6,800 miles, equating to 29.1 miles of journeys of under one mile

29.1 miles of driving a year would equate to 6481.70 grammes of CO2 emitted. With 31,695,988 registered cars on UK roads, this would equate up to 205,444 tonnes of CO2

Were 22% of drivers to swap these journeys for the zero-emissions e-scooter, this would equate to a savings of 44,261 tonnes of CO2 – which is equivalent to the annual emissions from 29,214 cars.

About Move Electric

Move Electric is a new channel dedicated to e-mobility.

It reports on everything in the ‘e-universe’, from electric cars, bikes, scooters and more, through to energy generation and provision in a changing world, always excited by the opportunities but never afraid to call out shortcomings.

It is produced by Haymarket Automotive, part of Haymarket Media Group, which also publishes market-leading brands What Car? and Autocar. These two brands will support the launch of Move Electric and have a combined monthly audience of more than five million unique users, one million YouTube subscribers, 200,000 Twitter followers, 150,000 Facebook likes and 50,000 Instagram followers.

For further media information please contact Performance Communications:

Daniel Prescott at Performance Communications

Tel: 07855055595


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