London looks to install as many as 50,000+ EV charge points by 2025

London Mayor Sadiq Khan has unveiled an updated electric vehicle infrastructure delivery plan which aims to put as many as 50,000 EV charge points in the city by 2025, as London looks to become a zero emission transport city by 2030.

The plan looks to eliminate barriers to further accelerate the already rising rate of EV adoption in the city — estimates show EVs could increase from around 20,000 in the city today to more than 330,000 by 2025  — and it looks to address that by installing thousands and thousands of charge points, as Khan calls for “an electric vehicle revolution.”

Transport for London (TfL) has already committed to installing 300 rapid charge points by the end of 2020, and it’s expected that over 3,500 “slow to fast” AC charge points will also be installed by the end of 2020.

But many more will be needed if the city is to achieve its infrastructure goals, with anywhere from 36,000 to 51,600 total charge points seen as needed by 2025:

By 2025, with EV uptake in line with the MTS and London’s 1.5 degree plan, this could rise to between 2,300 to 4,100 rapid charge points and 33,700 to 47,500 slow to fast charge points.

The Mayor’s Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Taskforce expects most charge points will be installed by the private sector but also notes that “further support from the Government may be needed.”

London will also develop rapid charging hubs to serve high-mileage/business users with the idea that these drivers will know a fast charger should be readily available. The city plans to create at least five of these easily accessible flagship rapid hubs, “one in each sub region of London,” with the first to open in 2020.

The plan even addresses concerns that EVs will put too much strain on the power supply, noting “evidence provided by the National Grid and local distribution networks suggests that this can be effectively overcome through better coordinated and ‘smarter’ use of our power networks.”

National Grid Electricity System Operator (ESO) has already announced that Britain’s grid will be able to operate using 100% renewables by 2025 for cleaner electricity.

Khan has targeted air pollution in the city, and London launched the first 24-hour Ultra Low Emission Zone earlier this year. In the mayor’s foreword to the newly released EV infrastructure plan, Khan writes that “London’s air is so dirty and polluted it amounts to nothing less than a serious public health crisis.”

Electrek’s Take

London is currently keeping a solid pace in terms of installing EV charge points, but Khan and his task force are looking to up the ante in a big way, and deserve to be commended for the ambition.

The plan acknowledges that most drivers will charge at home if they can, but as is the case in many large cities, residents often don’t have off-street parking, while the plan notes that electric taxi fleets and even the “gig economy” will play a role in increasing the demand for available EV chargers.

The UK has considered moving up its all-zero emissions car deadline to 2030 or 2035, from 2040, but as Britain’s largest city, London isn’t waiting.

Bold initiatives like this and those being considered in India with cars, two- and three-wheelers, and ridesharing fleets will go a long way in accelerating worldwide EV adoption.

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