New homes in the UK could all be fitted with electric car charging points in the future, as the UK government has outlined a number of EV-supportive proposals in a public consultation on England’s building regulations.
The UK is promoting the legislation as the first of its kind in the world as it moves to increase electric vehicle adoption. Sales of new petrol and diesel cars are set to end in the UK by 2040, and there’s been talk about moving that deadline up earlier, to 2030 or 2035.
The government is also looking for all “newly installed rapid and higher powered chargepoints” to offer debit or credit card payment options by spring 2020.
Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said of the proposed home charging initiative:
“With record levels of ultra-low emission vehicles on our roads, it is clear there is an appetite for cleaner, greener transport.
Home charging provides the most convenient and low-cost option for consumers – you can simply plug your car in to charge overnight as you would a mobile phone.”
The government looks to prioritize smart charging for all new private EV chargers, as well. A recent study by UK energy system operator National Grid ESO outlined a scenario that would see 35 million EVs using smart charging technology to store large amounts of renewable electricity by that time.
The full proposal for home charging points details that:
We propose specifying that the chargepoints must have a minimum power rating output of 7kW, be fitted with a universal socket that can charge all types of electric vehicle currently on the market and meet relevant safety and accessibility requirements.
In addition to the home charging requirement, other recommended policy positions include:
- The government proposes every new non-residential building and every non-residential building undergoing a major renovation with more than ten car parking spaces to have one chargepoint and cable routes for an electric vehicle chargepoint for one in five spaces.
- The government proposes a requirement of at least one chargepoint in existing non-residential buildings with more than 20 car parking spaces, applicable from 2025.
The UK is aiming for net zero emissions by 2050, and electric vehicles are seen as a major key to hitting that target.
Most EV users charge at home most of the time, so a mandatory requirement like this could do at least as much to accelerate EV adoption in the UK as anything else.
Having a charging option available without even thinking about it makes it easier for drivers to see themselves in an electric car, though it may be easier to simply require the installation of a 240V outlet. Just about every home with a garage already has a charging point — slow though it may be — which is more than you can say about ICE cars having home access to refueling.
The UK’s Committee on Climate Change recently said the government’s actions over the next 18 months will determine if it has any “credibility,” and this could be considered one such positive action in that regard, as well.
And though the US isn’t the UK, it’s not crazy to think California or other states could do something like this. The biggest EV state in the country is already making it mandatory to install solar energy production on new homes by 2020 — an initiative like this, or one that’s similar, seems like a natural fit for the Golden State.
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