If you don’t have chargers, people won’t buy electric vehicles — a bit like the chicken and the egg dilemma. It all has to happen simultaneously. We need the ecosystem in order to support the uptake of vehicles. If New South Wales in Australia aims to achieve 50% of new vehicle sales being EVs by 2030, the state government has to support a fast charging system.
The first stage of what could be Australia’s most extensive high-speed electric vehicle charging network (certainly won’t be the longest, as Queensland and Western Australia are fighting for that title) has been announced by State Treasurer Matt Kean. Mr Kean says “the NSW government will fund up to 50 per cent of the capital costs of the charging bays which will be rolled out on key travel routes across the state ‘so drivers can put range anxiety in the rearview mirror’.”
The $35 million on offer is part of a $171 million funding program to roll out 1,000 ultra-fast charging stations across the state over the next four years. This will be good news for all those people who have taken advantage of the NSW state EV incentives, a $3,000 rebate for the first 20,000 EVs priced under $68,750, and a stamp duty exemption for cars priced under $78,000.
It aims to place an ultra-fast charger every 100 km in regional areas and every 5 km in metropolitan areas (particularly in areas with limited off-street parking). Not only is the government encouraging the uptake of EVs, but also of renewable energy, as all charging stations must be powered by renewables, and onsite battery storage is encouraged.
Construction of all charging stations approved in this first round is expected to be completed within two years. Depending on the each individual EV’s ability, ultra-fast chargers can take as little as 15 minutes to charge up to 400 km. Each site will be required to provide four charging bays, two of them rated at 350 kW and two rates at 175 kW or more.
Concerns have been expressed about ongoing maintenance and upkeep. Many are also querying the ease of payment for those who find it difficult to use a variety of payment apps. There is a need for a common charging payment structure.
But on the whole, well done Mr Kean — please run for Prime Minister. We could really do with this approach at a federal level.
Source: The Driven
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