Major changes to electric vehicle chargepoint policy in the UK

The British Government has announced major changes to electric vehicle policy in the UK, including an additional £1bn of funding for chargepoints.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced on 13 May that the UK government will encourage the growth of electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure by providing a further £1bn of funding to reduce “range anxiety for those who use EVs.”

During Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday, MP Ruth Edwards said: “Green investments generated the highest returns in the recovery of the 2008 financial crisis.”

The MP for Rushcliffe continued to state that “investment in low carbon infrastructure such as the electric vehicle chargepoint network and renewable energy production will also help the UK meet its net zero target by 2050.”

Changes in chargepoint funding

The Office for Low Emission Vehicles has recently confirmed the continuation of the ‘electric vehicle homecharge scheme’ (EVHS) and ‘workplace charging scheme’ (WCS) for another year. OLEV is also re-confirming the continuation of the ‘on street residential chargepoint scheme’ (ORCS) for another year.

The grant for these schemes will be set at £350 towards the cost of purchase and installation of a chargepoint at home through the electric vehicle homecharge scheme, and £350 towards a chargepoint socket at work through the workplace charging scheme. This is a reduction from £500 to £350.

The change in the grant will enable twice as many people to benefit from a grant (from 30,000 to 57,000 under the EVHS). This will support the expected increase in the update of electric vehicles.

Additional changes to UK EV schemes

Currently only electric cars and vans are eligible for the EVHS scheme, however on 12 March the UK government announced that they are extending who can benefit from the scheme to include larger electric motorbikes.

Local authorities can now apply for a grant to cover part of the capital costs of installing chargepoints for residents who lack off-street parking. The grant rate will be set at £6,500 per chargepoint. This funding can be increased to £7,500 per chargepoint in certain circumstances, only on occasions where a local authority has demonstrated a need for this level of support.

While the scheme will remain broadly first come, first serve, OLEV have announced that they will prioritise on basis of need and whether previous funding has been awarded.

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