Government moves to tackle the varying reliability of the UK’s charging network
The UK’s electric vehicle rapid charging network will be required to have a 99% reliability rate under new laws coming in later this year.
This, ministers hope, will eradicate range anxiety and create a “world-class” charging grid. The legislation also includes a £1.6 billion investment in 300,000 new charge points across the country, which, it says, would be five times as many traditional fuel pumps currently in operation. These will be operational by 2030 and spread across the country, it promises.
A Department for Transport (DfT) spokesperson told Autocar: “We’ve committed £1.6bn to support the rollout of charge points across the UK and, as part of our recently published EV Infrastructure Strategy, we will set new legal requirements to improve reliability at public charge points.”
They added that accessibility of charging devices is also a priority: “We recently consulted on ensuring that charge points are inclusively designed and will publish our response later this year.”
Yesterday, it was revealed that the number of EV public chargers in the UK has risen by 33%, with 30,290 now in operation. This data, sourced by mapping provider Zap Map and published by the DfT, showed that around 7500 new devices have been installed in the past year – 1915 in the past three months alone.
Broken down, the figures show that London has the most chargers, with 111 per 100,000 people. The least in the UK was found to be the entire country of Northern Ireland, which has just 18 per 100,000. On average across the UK, there are 45 public chargers per 100,000 people.
It also found what percentage of those were rapid chargers, with Scotland recording 13.6 per 100,000, and Northern Ireland just 1.3. On a more local level, the north-west of England has 5.9 per 100,000, while the north-east has 9.4.
EV uptake is expected to continue rising exponentially as the 2030 ban on new ICE car sales looms, and the figures show the government, as well as well as charging point companies, are reacting to this: at this point in 2015, there were only around 2000 devices in operation, rising to 10,000 in 2018.