Over half of UK local authorities cannot afford EV charging

A freedom of information request issued by the ECA has revealed that over half (52%) of local authorities in the UK said that electric vehicle charge points (EVCPs) are prohibitively expensive to install.

The data also highlighted rapid changes in technology and energy network constraints as other barriers to EVCP deployment in UK districts.

Luke Osborne, ECA energy solutions advisor, says: “Members of our industry are remarkably well placed to help deliver a net zero carbon UK by 2050. But if local councils don’t have the right infrastructure or funding in place within the next few years, all the promises made at COP26 will have been simple rhetoric.

“Following the pledge at COP26 by 24 nations to ‘end the era of fossil fuels’ by 2040 or earlier, it is disappointing to find that a lack of funding and joined-up policy at the local government level is hindering the rollout of charge point installations.

“More funding must be made available to local authorities, which in turn should work with industry to create a credible plan for deployment, and actually deliver on the promises made today.”

Steve Bratt, ECA CEO, said new EVCP technology and boosted industry skills must be reinforced by joined-up thinking. He adds: “Without an integrated plan to install a comprehensive charging network, customers will not make the necessary switch to EVs. Drivers are understandably worried about being stranded without fuel. We must make the EV charging network a priority in the shift to fossil-free motoring.”

A report produced by the Green Jobs Task Force earlier this year showed that the UK could produce up to 1.6 million electric vehicles (EV) by 2040 and 50,000 vehicle technicians and EVCP installers will need retraining or upskilling by 2025 to meet predicted demand.

ECA’s 2,700 member businesses, with a combined turnover of over £4 billion, ranging from SMEs to large, nationwide contracting businesses, are at the forefront of grid decarbonisation and the electrification of heat and transport.

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