Conservatives back LPG age extension on Edinburgh taxis

Conservatives in Edinburgh have called on the city to relax age rules for taxis which use LPG.

Representatives from Auto Gas Limited and Edinburgh Central Taxis have met with Edinburgh City Councillors, at the city chambers last month, to discuss the age limit of taxis with LPG (liquid petroleum gas) conversions.

If you repower your vehicle to run on LPG in London, you are granted an additional five years life extension on the cab. In London the age limits for taxis are fifteen years, which is then extended to 20 years once converted to run on LPG.

Edinburgh City Council is currently against the five-year extension suggestion which then leaves only TX Taxis and an 8-10 year age limit on all taxis regardless of emissions.

Miles Briggs, MSP, said: “The new LPG engines are more environmentally friendly and fuel efficient, as well as increasing the longevity of TX taxis. However, it will not be economically viable for more taxi drivers to make the LPG conversions to their taxis if they are going to be decommissioned after ten years, regardless of the conversion.

“It would be counter-intuitive for the council not take this more environmentally friendly solution. This is a great opportunity to decrease vehicle emissions in the capital and keep the much loved traditional cab.”

Cllr Callum Laidlaw added: “The Council’s plans to restrict the age of the taxis on our streets may be well-intentioned but they fail to recognise the environmental benefits that LPG conversion can bring to older vehicles. Indeed, an LPG-converted older taxi still emits less NoX and particulates than a new Euro 6 compliant diesel vehicle.

“With many of our city’s cab drivers owning older vehicles, and unwilling or unable to invest in a new £60,000 hybrid vehicle, LPG conversion offers a recognised alternative to keep our iconic TX taxis on the road. That’s why I’m calling on the Council’s Licensing Sub-Committee to reconsider the age limit for taxis fitted with approved LPG conversions, to help protect both the environment and livelihoods.”

The LPG engine conversion make the engines more environmentally friendly: 99% Particulate Matter reduction, 80% NOx reduction and not to forget the 7% Co2 reduction.