The Department for Transport has committed £1.6 billion to expand the UK charging network, with around 300,000 public chargers expected to be available by 2030.
The number of chargers set to be installed by the end of the decade will be equivalent to almost 5 times the number of fuel pumps on our roads today. Under the Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Strategy, there will also be legal requirements for operators to ensure drivers can pay by contactless, compare charging prices and find nearby chargepoints via apps.
£500 million will be invested to bring high quality, competitively priced public chargepoints to communities across the UK. This includes a £450 million Local Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (LEVI) fund, which will boost projects such as EV hubs and innovative on-street charging, so those without driveways don’t miss out on cleaner transport.
A pilot scheme for the LEVI fund launching today will see local authorities bid for a share of £10 million in funding, allowing selected areas to work with industry and boost public charging opportunities.
Meanwhile, the LEVI funding includes up to £50 million to fund staff to work on local challenges and public chargepoint planning – ensuring that any development complements all other zero emission forms of travel, such as walking and cycling.
The existing £950 million Rapid Charging Fund will support the rollout of at least 6,000 high powered super-fast chargepoints across England’s motorways by 2035, ensuring the UK continues to lead the Western world in the provision of rapid and ultra-rapid public chargers.
This comes on top of ministers’ pledges to continue addressing any barriers to private sector rollout of chargepoints, such as local councils delaying planning permission and high connection costs.
Chargepoint operators are already committed to installing an additional 15,000 rapid chargepoints across England’s entire road network – a quadrupling of the current offer – and over 100,000 on-street chargepoints by 2025.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “We’re powering ahead with plans to help British people go electric, with our expanding charging network making journeys easier right across the country.
“Clean transport isn’t just better for the environment, but is another way we can drive down our dependence on external energy supplies. It will also create new high-skilled jobs for our automotive and energy sectors and ultimately secure more sustainable and affordable motoring for all.”
The Department for Transport has also outlined a set of new standards and legislation introduced to improve people’s experience of using public chargepoints.
The government is mandating that operators provide real-time data about chargepoints. It is ensuring that consumers can compare prices and seamlessly pay for their charging using contactless cards. They will also be able to use apps to find their nearest available chargepoint.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “No matter where you live – be that a city centre or rural village, the north, south, east or west of the country – we’re powering up the switch to electric and ensuring no one gets left behind in the process.
“The scale of the climate challenge ahead of us all is well known and decarbonising transport is at the very heart of our agenda. That’s why we’re ensuring the country is EV-fit for future generations by the end of this decade, revolutionising our charging network and putting the consumer first.”
Alongside the strategy, the government is additionally launching an automotive roadmap outlining joint government and industry commitments to achieve the decarbonisation of road transport.
This is the first in a series of roadmaps that will be published over the course of the year for each sector of the Prime Minister’s Ten Point Plan, showcasing how the UK is delivering on its green commitments.
The roadmap brings together the government’s policies designed to help and support the automotive sector in the shift towards greener transport and will help businesses plan more effectively in the transition to a zero-emission future.