The EU has given a massive boost to the electric car market by issuing binding targets for the installation of charging points to its 27 member states.
Under the plans almost 800,000 publicly accessible charging points will be in place by 2020 with the ‘type 2’ plug becoming the new standardised connection across the continent.
Electric car take up has been slow in most countries with cost and range anxiety, the fear of running out of battery out of reach of the next available charging station, the main barriers.
”We can finally stop the chicken and the egg discussion on whether infrastructure needs to be there before the large scale roll-out of electric vehicles,” said Connie Hedegaard, European climate action commissioner.
“With our proposed binding targets for charging points using a common plug, electric vehicles are set to hit the road in Europe. This is climate mainstreaming in action. And a win for the climate, businesses, consumers and jobs.”
European transport is 94% reliant on oil, the vast majority of which is imported. In the process of diversifying this mix, it also hopes to cut greenhouse gas emissions from transport by 60% by 2050.
The EU hopes to have six million electric vehicles on the road by 2020. The US is currently leading the rollout with almost 20,000 registered so far.
Germany has the most installed charging stations with an estimated 1937 in place.
Its new 2020 target is 150,000 based on its government’s goal of having one million electric vehicle son the road by 2020.
Rules to encourage the expansion of hydrogen and liquefied natural gas (LNG) have also been proposed.