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EV INFRASTRUCTURE


VINCI Energies examines the dilemma facing the UK in providing sufficient charging infrastructure for future transport


Supercharging the UK’s EV D


emand for electric vehicles is gaining momentum but in order to replace petrol and diesel fuelled vehicles, the nation’s electric infrastructure needs to be supercharged, according to VINCI Energies.


At the end of 2019 there were close to 265,000


electric vehicle (EV) models on the UK’s roads, following a strong 12-month period that saw more than 72,700 EVs sold. Despite this uptick in the EV fleet, sales remain in the slow lane when compared to that of the petrol- and diesel-fueled vehicle population. If the government’s ultra-low emission target – ‘The Road to Zero strategy’ – is to be met by 2030, a lot more of us are going to have to be convinced that EV is the right path to take. One of the main obstacles of purchase is not just


the expense of buying an EV itself (they’re not cheap) but also the lack of customer confidence in the technology. While they know EVs are better for the planet, companies haven’t done enough to build faith in going solely electric. Instead there’s an anxious hum around owning an EV that’s much more than ‘range anxiety’. It also covers other practicalities, such as where do I charge my car on a long journey? How long will it take to charge? How


24 /// Testing & Test Houses /// April 2020


much additional time and miles will this add to my journey? Such questions show that the switch to EV


transport is far from being a trivial decision for the average consumer and such practicalities far outweigh the more traditional factors that influence the choice of new car.


THE COST OF CLEAN ENERGY While the number of charging points around the UK is growing, a report last year by London-based Capital Economics said that the UK will have to spend an eye watering £240 billion installing an average of 4,000 EV charging and heat pumps a day, if the government is to meet its target of cutting greenhouse gas emissions to ‘net zero’ by 2050. VINCI Energies, via its Actemium Coventry business unit, has been working within the EV charging infrastructure sector since 2011, and installed more than 1,500 EV chargers across the UK. Actemium now specialises in advising and accompanying businesses to upgrade their fleets to electric vehicles, as well as implementing their required charging infrastructures to accommodate this transition.


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