A £37 million funding package for electric car charge points has been announced by the Government.
The Government has pledged to cover 75 per cent of the cost of thousands of new electric car charge points at people’s homes, on the streets, at railway stations and on the public sector estate.
Funding for the scheme comes from the Government’s £400 million commitment to increase the uptake of ultra-low emission vehicles and is available until April 2015.
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin, who made the announcement this morning, said: “This investment underlines the government’s commitment to making sure that the UK is a world leader in the electric car industry.
“Plug-in vehicles can help the consumer by offering a good driving experience and low running costs. They can help the environment by cutting pollution. And most importantly of all, they can help the British economy by creating skilled manufacturing jobs in a market that is bound to get bigger.”
The full package announced today includes up to £13.5 million for a 75 per cent grant for homeowners in the UK wanting to have a domestic charge point installed and up to £9 million available to fund the installation of charge points at railway stations.
An £11 million fund will give local authorities in England a 75 per cent grant to install on-street charging for residents who have or have ordered a plug-in vehicle but do not have off-street parking and to install rapid charge points in their areas around the strategic road network.
Up to £3 million will go towards the installation of charge points on the government and wider public estate by April 2015 and the announcement also included a commitment to review government buying standards to lower the fleet average CO₂/km of new cars and encourage the uptake of plug-in vehicles in central government.
Business Minister Michael Fallon said: “The government is supporting a range of ultra-low emission vehicles. Today’s announcement will make the consumer environment for plug-in vehicles more attractive and, in turn, makes the UK a more compelling place to invest.
“There are huge business opportunities so we’re committed to ensuring the UK leads the way globally for low carbon vehicles.”
The package also includes a previously-announced £280,000 of funding to expand the Energy Saving Trust’s plugged-in fleets initiative in England to help a further 100 public and private sector fleets to understand and identify where ultra-low emission vehicles could work for them.
The Government has made it a requirement that charge points are installed in accordance with the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET)’s Code of Practice for Electric Vehicle Charging Equipment Installation.
To assist engineers in understanding the code of practice the IET has launched a new training course backed by a new City and Guilds qualification, 2919 – Electric Vehicle Charging Equipment Installation, the first of its kind in the UK.
The Electric Vehicle charging point installer course, based on the IET’s code of practice and developed with expert training provider Group Horizon, includes modules on understanding charging equipment, installation requirements, certification and fault finding.
Carolyn White, director of IET standards, said: “The Government’s recently announced subsidies shows a commitment to ensuring that the UK is a world leader in electric vehicles.
“As the industry expands, it is vital that benchmarks are introduced to enable those working in the installation of electric vehicle charging equipment to meet accepted standards.
“The IET’s code of practice was launched in 2012 and has become widely recognised by industry as the leading guide in the installation of electric vehicle charging equipment. The time is now right to introduce this new course and qualification, which will set the standards for electric vehicle installation.”