Green Shropshire Xchange (GSX) today supports the launch, for public consultation, of the draft strategy and action plan to deliver an electric vehicle charging network across Herefordshire, Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin.  The document is available at http://www.greenshropshirexchange.org.ukThe initiative responds to the reality that existing electric vehicle charging points in the Marches area are both low in numbers and limited in geographical coverage.

The strategy and action plan is intended to develop a cohesive, widespread, and reliable infrastructure.  Voluntary effort has created the draft and will subsequently identify potential charging point hosts and begin the development process.

It is often assumed that most electric vehicle users will charge up at home, but around 43% of existing car owners do not have access to off street parking.1

The proposed network should extend to locations where there is a high density of vehicles including workplaces, business and retail parks, public car parks (including Park & Ride), hotels and leisure facilities.  The initiative is especially important to the local tourism sector to ensure visitors with electric vehicles have access to the facilities they need while visiting the Marches area.

Robert Saunders, leading the work on behalf of Green Shropshire Xchange, said;

‘This is a bold venture in the absence of any other strategic initiative.  We are looking to develop partnerships with the private, voluntary and public sectors, the visitor economy and wider public.  We are looking for comments on the draft strategy and action plan to allow us to improve it further.  Working together, we can help bring forward the future of electric vehicles to the Marches.’

This initiative has the support of Shropshire Chamber of Commerce; Shropshire, Herefordshire & Worcestershire Federation of Small Businesses; Herefordshire and Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce, BESST and Telford Business Board.

The deadline for responses is 5.00pm, Monday 17 September 2018.

The draft strategy is available: http://www.greenshropshirexchange.org.uk/

1 Source:  Our energy insights – Forecourt thoughts: Mass fast charging of electric vehicles, National Grid

http://fes.nationalgrid.com/insights/forecourt-thoughts-mass-fast-charging-of-electric-vehicles/

Background

In July 2017 the government confirmed that it will end the sale of all new conventional petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2040, as it unveiled new plans to tackle air pollution.  The initiative includes investing nearly £100m in the UK’s charging infrastructure and funding the Plug In Car and Plug In Van Grant Schemes.

Plan for roadside NO2 concentrations published

Plan includes an end to the sale of all new conventional petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2040 and a new Clean Air Fund

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/plan-for-roadside-no2-concentrations-published

The government in the June 2017 Queen’s Speech launched the Automated and Electric Vehicles Bill.  This suggests motorway services and large fuel retailers could be made to provide electric charging points and hydrogen refuelling stations.  This would have relatively little effect directly in rural geographical Herefordshire and Shropshire (including Telford & Wrekin), so there remains a major challenge to provide local charging points.

Automated and Electric Vehicles Bill 2017-19 — UK Parliament

services.parliament.uk/…tedandelectricvehicles.html

The government supports investment in charging infrastructure through the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) for residential, workplace and other public charging facilities.

The Workplace Charging Scheme allows any business, charity or public authority to claim the grant towards the cost of installing electric vehicle charging points provided they have dedicated off street parking for staff or fleet use only.  The Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme provides support towards the costs of installation of a homecharger for electric vehicle users.

OLEV has allocated £1.5m of funding for 2017/18 and £4.5m for 2018/19 and 2019/20 for the On-street Residential Chargepoint Scheme, to increase the availability of plug-in vehicle charging infrastructure for residents who do not have access to off-street parking.

Highways England is pursuing its own objective ‘to ensure that 95% of the SRN {Strategic Road Network}  has a charge point at least every 20 miles and to complement the support given by the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) and industry for residential, workplace and other public recharging facilities.’

This includes working towards new rapid charging facilities along the A49 between Hereford and Shrewsbury.

We have identified clear opportunities to work with numerous national organisations already pursuing installation of charging points and others seriously considering the issue.

Warner Leisure Hotels has announced the installation of free-to-use EV charge points across its portfolio of locations, including Holme Lacy House Hotel, Herefordshire.

Shell is already introducing 50kW fast chargers (though targeting elsewhere than the Marches) and BP has similarly announced its intention  to install electric car charging stations across its UK petrol station portfolio.

The National Trust is rolling out EV charging points across an increasing number of its sites.  ASDA has established several charging points, together with the Midcounties Co-Operative, a small number of hotels, restaurants and pubs.