Ofgem to spend £300m on EV infrastructure

Published:  24 May, 2021

UK energy regulator Ofgem has announced that will spend £300 million on infrastructure for electric vehicles and other low carbon projects, including 1,800 new ultra-rapid charge points at 39 motorway service areas, with another 1,750 in towns and cities.

Currently there are currently 918 ultra-rapid charge points in the UK. The government’s target is to have at least ultra-rapid charge points at motorway service areas in England, with more for larger sites.

The move is intended to alleviate consumer range anxiety. Ofgem research found that 36% of households that do not intend to get an electric vehicle are put off making the switch over a lack of charging points near their home.

Ofgem Chief Executive Jonathan Brearley said: “This £300 million 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.

Transport Minister Rachel Maclean observed: “With more than 500,000 electric cars now on UK roads, this will help to increase this number even further as drivers continue to make the switch to cleaner, greener vehicles.”

Keith Bell, Member of the Climate Change Committee, said: “On the journey to Net Zero, we need to make it as easy as possible for people to manage without their combustion engine cars. Electric vehicles are looking more and more attractive, but we need to make sure they can be charged easily, and that means having the right infrastructure – charge points and network capacity – in the right place at the right time.”

The upgrades would also include improvements to cables, substations and other infrastructure so the National Grid would be able to support the growing vehicular demand for electricity. The total level of investment is expected to reach more than £40 billion.

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