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Government pleads with councils to make the most of £4.5m electric charge point funding

Ministers from the Departments for Transport, and Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy have urged councils to take their share of a £4.5m funding pot to be put towards electric car charging points.

Transport minister Jesse Norman, said the UK’s transport industry was on the verge of an “electrical revolution” but that councils needed to do more, as it emerged that only five authorities in the UK had taken part in an electric car scheme.

Both the Electric Vehicle Homecharge and the Plug-in Car Grant schemes have been extended in an attempt to get more people involved.

The funding has been available since 2016, it makes up 75% of necessary backing available, although councils have to find the rest through public and private sources.

Norman said: “We are in the early stages of an electric revolution in the UK transport sector, and connectivity is at its heart.

“Millions of homes in the UK do not have off-street parking, so this funding is important to help local councils ensure that all their residents can take advantage of this revolution.”

Many of the areas making efforts to improve the uptake of electric vehicles are cities, such as Liverpool and Dundee, with the development of large numbers of charging points, or charging hubs, at the centre of most plans.

Norman and business minister Claire Perry are writing to local councils to urge the uptake of these new technologies, as the government ups its efforts to increase the number of electrical vehicles in the face of promises to end sales of petrol and diesel cars in the UK by 2040.

Rebecca Wallace, part of Dundee City Council’s fleet development team, said that some groups of charging points in city were averaging as many as 40 charges per day.

Writing in PSE late last year, Wallace said that some of the most recent charging points implemented by the council, could fill 80% of a cars battery within 20-30 minutes.

A set of schemes for electric vehicles were announced in the Autumn Budget in November, including a further £100m to help consumers purchase electric vehicles.

Top image: 3alexd

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