The government has made £7m in funding available to businesses developing technologies that decarbonise the freight sector by incorporating technology such as artificial intelligence (AI).
Up to 36 small and medium-sized businesses will receive a share of the funding from the freight innovation fund in the next three years.
“This fund will accelerate new ideas and technologies, helping to develop a future pipeline of innovations that can be rolled out to create jobs and allow everyone to get their goods faster and easier,” said Richard Holden, roads minister.
It aims to use climate technology innovation to reduce emissions across the UK’s roads, railways, seas, skies and canals.
One freight tech company that previously attracted government funding is Hypermile, a London-based company that developed an AI tool to help heavy goods vehicle drivers save fuel.
Recipients of the government climate and transport tech fund will also attend the freight innovation fund accelerator, which provides potential private investment and access to a “freight innovation cluster” community.
Areas that will be addressed are the collection and sharing of transport data, reduction of bigger shipments and better port distribution.
Nicola Yates OBE, CEO of Connected Places Catapult, said: “The fund will help us to work with innovators and industry partners to develop a pipeline of technology and data innovations that will tackle the freight sector’s emerging needs, ensuring that resilience, efficiency and carbon reduction are core to the sector’s future.”
Last month saw the government provide £165m to five UK businesses creating renewable aircraft fuel.