UK GOVERNMENT DOUBLES EV INFRASTRUCTURE FUND

The Department for Transport has announced that it will devote £10 million to improving the UK’s electric vehicle infrastructure in 2021.

It is the second time the government has doubled its EV infrastructure funding allowance. Last August, £2.5 million was allocated to the installation of EV charging points in residential areas, matching an earlier £2.5 million pledge made in 2017.

The latest investment will go towards installing an additional 3600 charge points in residential areas across the country, and could fund the development of a new publicly accessible charging point monitoring platform, which will show whether individual facilities are in use or out of order. 

The DfT says such a system “could then be used by developers and incorporated into sat navs and route mapping apps”. 

The government claims to have supported the installation of more than 24,000 public charging points, including 2400 rapid chargers, as part of its ‘Road to Zero’ low-emission strategy.

The latest investment, however, follows a wave of criticism from automotive industry leaders and experts, directed at the slow roll-out of EV infrastructure in the UK. 

Last week, Transport Minister George Freeman claimed the only way the government would meet its goal of stopping sales of combustion-fuelled cars by 2040 would be through investment in infrastructure and promotion of electric vehicles. 

He said: “By 2024, I’d like to more than double the number of rapid charge points to over 5000. That would give even more people across the country the chance to drive electric vehicles – and we need to think about a balance between following where the uptake [of electric cars] is and reassuring tomorrow’s purchasers that we’re building for them.”

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