29 new public electric car charging points will be rolled out this year, as Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan has signed off on new funding to be provided to local councils through the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI).
Still plans for 900,000 EVs by 2030
According to the Department of Transport, applications for electric car purchase grants are running at three times the rate they were in 2020. The Department says that it hopes that: "providing on street chargers will help encourage more take up of EVs by those who don't have a home charger, as well as addressing driver concerns about range anxiety." Mr Ryan underlined the Government's commitment to put more than 900,000 electric cars on the road by 2030, under the Climate Action Plan, a revised version of which will be published shortly.
More people making the switch
"I am delighted to announce that Louth County Council and Dublin City Council have been allocated funding under the local authority public charge point scheme," said Ryan. "This funding will see an additional 29 charge points rolled out for public use. There is significant growth in the number of electric vehicles with EVs making up 12 per cent of new car sales from January to May 2021*. As more people are making the switch to clean and efficient electric vehicles, it is important that infrastructure keeps ahead of demand. I encourage other local authorities to follow Louth and Dublin's lead so we can grow this scheme all over the country".
Sufficient public infrastructure
The Department says that this first tranche of funding is part of a plan to "ensure sufficient public infrastructure is in place to meet the increasing demand." According to a Department spokesperson: "On-street and public charge points allow those who do not have a driveway access to a charge point, removing a barrier to the uptake of electric vehicles. Charge points may be located where public parking is provided on-street or where Local Authorities identify a suitable area in their jurisdiction." The Department also said that it is currently "examining options" for supports for charging points in residential areas with shared parking, such as apartment buildings.
*This is the combined figure for electric cars and plug-in hybrids.