Business organisation Logistics UK has welcomed the Government’s £50 million boost for electric vehicle (EV) chargepoints for those in leasehold and rented accommodation, as well as the expansion of the Workplace Charging Scheme for small and medium businesses.
Respondents to a recent Logistics UK EV survey noted that access to overnight chargepoints is a key barrier to uptake of electric vehicles. The new funding will enable electric vehicle charging to be conveniently available at home and at the workplace for the van drivers.
Denise Beedell, Logistics UK’s Policy Manager for Vans and Urban, said: “We are pleased that additional funding is now available for van operators who take their vehicles home, provided they have access rights to off-street parking.
“This announcement is a positive step forward in the government's drive to decarbonise light commercial vehicle (LCV) operations.
“The expansion of the Workplace Charging Scheme, which provides funding for up to 40 chargepoints per premises, to small and medium enterprises should be sufficient to cover operators, fleets, staff and visitors for companies of this size. However, sufficient power infrastructure must also be in place to meet this increased demand for electricity before any chargepoints are installed; Logistics UK is calling for a fair and equitable way of apportioning costs for such energy supply upgrades at commercial premises. And, to lead to a greater uptake of EVs among LCV operators, we continue to push for greater electric van model grants, especially for heavier vans over 2.5 tonnes.”
Meanwhile, in Scotland, £210,000 has been awarded to test new ways of improving accessibility across ChargePlace, Scotland’s electric vehicle charging network. Organisations will work on solutions to tackle the issue of bay hogging or ICEing – where a non-electric vehicle parks in an EV charging bay and blocks the ability of others wishing to charge.
The funding will also support trial solutions to ensure disabled people have easier access to charge their electric vehicles.
Keith Robertson, at the Mobility and Access Committee Scotland said: “As Scotland moves towards a net zero carbon economy it is imperative that Scottish Government make it inclusive for all on this transformational journey.
“Given that there are over 1 million disabled people in Scotland, around 25% of our population, the Mobility and Access Committee for Scotland (MACS) was pleased to be involved in assessing the accessibility of the designs submitted to the challenge fund.
“It is so very important that when moving towards alternative ways to travel that, as a society, we ensure that the delivery of low carbon options is inclusive to all, immaterial of their abilities or level of income."