A new government study shows that the UK needs to expand its electric vehicle charging network tenfold by 2030.
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), a non-departmental government department, conducted the survey as part of its broader plan to achieve its net zero emissions target by 2050. The UK has concluded that it will need 10 times more than 25,000 existing charging stations. , to meet demand as it approaches the government’s plan for sales of new gasoline and diesel vehicles by 2030.
The CMA said some charging facilities, such as shopping centers, offices and private homes, are making good progress, while others have room for improvement.
He also noted that concerns about the reliability of public charging stations, an ambiguous pricing structure, and a lack of on-street and rural charging have discouraged some potential EV buyers from switching from internal combustion engines.
To improve trust in the charging network, CMA has four action plans that must be implemented.
A working charging point should be easy to find and provide up-to-date information on availability and operating status. Reimbursement should be made quickly and easily without the need to sign up for an operator. Prices must be clearly listed. All types of EVs must have access to a charging point. A national charging strategy is needed
The CMA also made additional recommendations to help improve the UK charging network. This includes a national charging strategy involving all local governments in the UK. Support local authorities with the introduction of road charging. At the charging point, competition between electricity providers begins.
Authorities have also recommended creating public institutions to monitor the sector and make refilling as simple as refueling at a gas station.
According to a survey of electric vehicle charging networks, the average number of charging points across the UK is 34 per 100,000 people, but there are significant differences between regions. London leads the way with 80 charging points per 100,000 population, while Scotland is second with 43 charging points per 100,000 population.
The southeast is close to the UK average (33 per 100,000), but the Northwest (21), Yorkshire and Humber (20) and Northern Ireland (17) lag behind the national average.
Electric vehicle charging ‘postal code lottery’
Andrea Coscelli, President of CMA, said, “Electric vehicles play an important role in meeting Net Zero, but the challenges of creating an entirely new charging network should not be underestimated.
“Some areas of rollout are going well and the UK network is growing, but it is clear that others, such as motorway gas stations and street charging, have much larger hurdles to overcome.
“As we approach a ban on new gasoline and diesel vehicle sales by 2030, action is now needed to address the zip code lottery issue of electric vehicle charging.
“Our recommendations will foster strong competition now and in the future, encourage more investment and build people’s trust.”
Coscelli added that the CMA has begun a competition law investigation into EV charging on the highway. Last month, Ecotricity sold its rights to an “Electric Highway” along the UK’s highway network to Gridserve, which has awarded highway service providers Moto, Roadchef and Extra to contracts lasting 10-15 years.
It currently serves 80% of all highway gas station filling stations, which make up about two-thirds of the UK’s highway service network. CMA is concerned that Electric Highway monopolizes these major arterial routes, which could cause drivers to miss the competition that competing providers can offer.
Gridserve has promised to replace all existing charging points on its network with new technologies that include contactless payments, eliminating the need to register before charging.
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