UK Commits Investment for More EV Charging Infrastructure

The UK government’s energy regulator has committed to a £300M ($416M) investment in EV charging infrastructure.

Ofgem has announced a program of installing a range of vehicle chargers 1,800 ultra-rapid charge points, tripling the current network, and a further 1,750 charge points in towns and cities. While this is only a drop in the ocean of what would be required to promote mass uptake of BEVs in time for the nation’s proposed total ban on ICE technology in new cars by 2030, the regulator stresses that this is the beginning of the $40Bn ($55.4Bn) the government is earmarking for environmentally friendly energy projects in the next seven years.

The move is a small step towards addressing the enduring distrust among consumers of BEVs. Ofgem’s own research has found that 36% of households that do not intend to get an EV are put off making the switch over a lack of charging points near their home. It says now provincial cities including Glasgow, Kirkwall, Warrington, Llandudno, York and Truro will benefit from increased network capacity to support more ultra-rapid charge points, increased renewable electricity generation and the move to more electric heating for homes and businesses. Investment also covers more rural areas with charging points for commuters at train stations in North and Mid Wales and the electrification of the Windermere ferry.

Jonathan Brearley, chief executive of Ofgem said: “The payment will support the rapid take up of electric vehicles which will be vital if Britain is to hit its climate change targets. Drivers need to be confident that they can charge their car quickly when they need to. We’re paving the way for the installation of 1,800 ultra-rapid charge points, tripling the number of these public charge points. Drivers will have more charging options for longer journeys.”

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in Europe. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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