The Treasury has launched a £400 million fund to bolster Britain’s electric vehicle charging infrastructure, with the first £70 million allocated for 3000 charge points – more than doubling the number across the UK to 5000.
Rapid charge points can recharge a family car in as little as 20 minutes, compared to existing technology which can take 40 minutes. The UK already has one of the largest electric vehicle charging networks in Europe, and this investment will help make that the fastest by installing state-of-the-art technology.
A review is currently underway to explore the provision of charge points across major road networks, meaning drivers could charge their car whilst stopping for a coffee at a service station.
Also being announced today is £31.5 million for research into pioneering technologies to remove greenhouse gases from the atmosphere, and £22 million to research new kinds of air pollutants and minimise their effects on public health.
Exchequer Secretary Simon Clarke said:
“We are driving ahead with plans to make travel greener while backing British innovation and technology.
“I am delighted to announce this funding today that will more than double the number of rapid charge points for electric vehicles on our roads. Britain already boasts one of the biggest networks of charging infrastructure in Europe and soon we will have the fastest thanks to this investment.
“This is the latest in our proud record on climate change –having slashed emissions by over 40% since 1990, whilst simultaneously growing our economy, and setting an ambitious target for net zero emissions by 2050.”
Business, Energy and Clean Growth Minister Kwasi Kwarteng said:
“The UK has been going further and faster in tackling climate change by becoming the first major economy to legislate for net zero emissions by 2050 and helping us seize the opportunities of a greener future. With air pollution thought to kill as many as seven million people a year globally, it’s clear more needs to be done.
“That’s why we’re backing these initiatives, aimed at making improvements from battling air pollutants to protecting our invaluable sea life. These pioneering projects will help us maintain our world-leading position in this field, and to make further strides towards a more sustainable future for our planet.”
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said:
“It’s fantastic there is already a rapid chargepoint at almost every motorway service station, and now more charging stations than petrol stations. But I want to see thousands more chargepoints installed across the UK.
“This fund will help drum up further investment in charging infrastructure from the private sector, so charging an electric car becomes as easy as plugging in a smartphone.”
Further investment into green technology being announced today
The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has today taken another vital step in cleaning up the planet by unveiling £142.9 million investment in green projects, including driving forward approaches to removing greenhouse gases from the air.
Five projects are benefiting from the significant cash injection, including:
- Greenhouse Gas Removal Technologies (£31.52 million) – this will support the UK in its net zero ambitions, by driving forward approaches to remove greenhouse gases from the sky on a large scale
- Clean Air: Addressing the Challenge of Indoor & Outdoor Pollution (£22 million) – the next decade will see declining transport pollution but increases in other areas like household products and adhesives. This project will look at tackling emerging air pollutants indoors and outdoors, such as air fresheners and cleaning products, to minimise their effects on public health
- Cleaner food systems for healthy people and a healthy planet (£47 million) –– this will transform UK diets to be healthier and more sustainable through changes in production, manufacturing, retail and consumption. It will deliver coherent evidence to enable concerted action from policy, business and civil society to help the UK meet its targets on obesity and greenhouse gas emissions.
- Reusing and recycling materials in innovative ways (£30 million) – this programme will drive forward new research to support opportunities to re-use and recycle materials across sectors such as food, water, textiles and electronics – as well accelerating new, greener manufacturing technologies
- Sustainable Management of Marine Resources (£12.43 million) – This programme will ensure that the UK realises sustainable societal and economic benefits through better management of the UK’s marine resources, including working more closely with government, industry and the public.