Fleet News

Government should speed-up EV charge point installation, says Addison Lee

Addison Lee is urging the Government to help speed-up the installation of the electric vehicle (EV) charging network in London if it is to successfully switch to a plug-in hybrid fleet.

The new mayor of London Sadiq Khan has committed to facilitating a step change in EV charging infrastructure, including support for residential areas and a rapid charging network with dedicated sites for taxis. The Government has committed £23 million to fund the scheme.

There are around 850 charging points across London, with plans to install a further 4,500 over the next two years.

However, Mike Galvin, head of regulatory affairs at the private hire company, told Fleet News that, even with that increased capacity, the speed of installation and number of charging points won’t be enough to support his company’s fleet of 5,000 vehicles, let alone other operators in the city.

Galvin said the Addison Lee fleet operates to a three-year cycle and the deadline for ordering the next wave of vehicles is approaching.

“The mayor needs to find money from central government to increase the amount of charging stations across the city,” he said. “We are going to have to start replacing vehicles and what we don’t want to happen is that we buy them as plug-in hybrids, but are not actually able to use the electric power because we can’t charge them.

“Instead you’re going to end up with businesses just running on petrol or diesel instead and that’s not going to help deliver these air quality targets.”

 

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Comments

  • Gordon Evans - 31/05/2016 14:15

    Mike Galvin raises a very good point which has not been assimilated by Central or Local Government as yet. The Electric Vehicle charging infrastructure needs to expand exponentially if it is to keep pace with the uptake of EVs and also the target of reduced emissions (or Zero Emissions which, let's face it, should be the aim in cities). Hybrid EVs are only the stepping stone and too much reliance is placed in this when really pure EV is the only way to eliminate tail-pipe emissions from cities. I would love Addison Lee to put in a massive order for Tesla Model 3 taxis (no pecuniary interest here!) and lead the way. Holland has already set a target I believe for EV-only sales from 2021. Batteries will get better the more committed we are to supporting their sales. Finally Government really needs to appoint an oversight department in charge of OLEV grants in terms of who and how charging point funding is granted. There are way too many broken charging points and if you can't ring them 24/7 (which most of them you can't) then they are not good enough for businesses to commit to. We MUST ensure the charging networks can support the users. We may also need a massive upgrade in London's / the UKs power distribution network to accommodate many EV users charging concurrently. If we are to meet London's emissions targets we need to do all this NOW and not in 2021.

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