A senior government figure has compared electric vehicles to the internet.
Roads minister Andrew Jones told conference delegates in London yesterday that use of ultra low emission vehicles was reaching a “tipping point”.
Jones said more plug-in vehicles were registered in 2015 than in the previous five years combined.
“The shift we are seeing reminds me of the spread of the internet in the 1990s,” Jones said.
“The internet started small, as a niche interest, but then it snowballed, and now it’s hard to imagine being without it.
“I think we are seeing a similar picture emerging for ultra low emission vehicles in Britain today.”
The government wants zero emissions from cars and vans by the midpoint of this century and is to spend £600M on the sector this Parliament.
Highways England last summer set out plans for 18-month tests of technology to allow electric vehicles to use the UK’s roads without needing to charge their batteries.
Meanwhile 12 British locations are battling for funding to promote ultra-low emission vehicles.
“The internet only really snowballed when internet users, providers, website retailers and investors came together in sufficient numbers to create a tipping point,” said Jones.
“We’re reaching that tipping point with the ultra low emission vehicles market.”