Posted on Wednesday 7th December 2022
A strategy setting out the development of Staffordshire’s future electric vehicle charging network will be supported by the county council.
Working closely with district and borough councils across the county, private providers and the energy sector, it will aim to meet the needs of communities and businesses as electric vehicle use continues to increase.
With sales of new petrol and diesel engine cars restricted from 2030 and new hybrid vehicles by 2035, councils across the country are being asked by central government to support the transition through strategies to boost availability of charging points.
This will include rapid speed charging hubs, fuelling forecourts, public and private car parks on-street charging and residential properties.
The strategy details commuting routes, places of interest (including workplaces and leisure venues), where power is available and suggests suitable charging point locations. It supports the county council’s commitment to carbon reduction and improving air quality. In 2019 the county council declared a climate emergency and committed to ensuring that the authority is net carbon neutral by 2050.
In addition, the strategy outlines how the county, district and borough councils should encourage the installation of charge points at workplaces or retail parks, improving charging availability at off-street parking areas and installation of charge points in council owned and managed car parks.
Currently, most homes without off-street parking (97 per cent) are not within a convenient walk of a public charging point, which is around 92,000 properties. As of October this year, there are 300 public charge points in Staffordshire, and the strategy sets out grow this to 3,000 over the next seven years.
In March this year, the Government published its national electric vehicle infrastructure strategy, which commits an additional £620million to support the transition from petrol/diesel vehicles.
Staffordshire County Council’s cabinet member for highways and transport David Williams said:
“The UK is already embarking on the transition towards electric vehicle use which is good news in terms of our combined efforts to reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality.
“As national legislation draws nearer it’s important that we take steps to enable the right infrastructure is in place across the county. We have an important role to play, working with our district and borough colleagues, to determine what this will look like based on the evidence gathered.
“Our strategy helps us to identify where the most appropriate places for charging points could be and how we will work with the private sector to facilitate successful delivery. We can work with businesses to encourage workplace charging and residents to support off-street charging, in addition to people and organisations making planning applications.
“We understand that electricity may not be the only type of alternative power for vehicles in future years, but this strategy needs to focus on national policy. We anticipate funding will shortly become available from the Government to support our work to put the strategy in place.”
The strategy will be discussed by members of the Prosperous Overview and Scrutiny Committee next Friday December 16.