By Diane Cooke
Government policy dictates that non-electric cars can not be sold after 2040.
With that in mind, Click4Reg.co.uk has analysed data sourced by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) and found that annual new electric car registrations in the UK have grown significantly over the last few years.
This year there have been 94,093 electric vehicles registered so far, up from 69,933 registered last year – a 34.54% increase.
March saw the highest number of electric vehicles registered (22,816), and September was second highest, with 22,619 purchases.
The rise in the number of electric vehicles bought could be down to the government’s Plug-in Car Grant, which began in January 2011, to help people save as much as £4,500 on a selection of electric cars to reduce the number of petrol and diesel cars on the road.
Since its launch, the number of new cars registered through the scheme reached 116,649 in September 2017, a contrast to just 910 six years earlier in 2011.
However, despite the rise in electric vehicles on the roads, Click4Reg has found that although the number of charge points are increasing, there are simply not enough – demand is soaring, but reliability and a range of charge points is grinding to a halt.
As of June 2017, there were 12,849 electric vehicle charging connectors on 6,913 devices in 4,476 locations across the UK – an increase from 2011, when 1,537 charging points were available.
Research by Click4Reg has found that of all charge points situated around the UK, 22% (2,984) were situated in Greater London. Scotland had the second highest number of charge points at 2,015 (14.8%), followed by the South East with an estimated 1,753 charge points for electric cars.
However, UK-based Southern Railway has partnered with electric vehicle charging firm Pod Point to upgrade its 48 existing free-to-use electric vehicle (EV) charging points, which are located in 23 stations across the country.
The EV charging units are currently present in car parks at various stations across London and South England, including Arundel, Eastbourne, Barnham, Hassocks, Chichester, Hove, Coulsdon South, Sutton and Dorking.
Southern has initiated the upgrade project following the collection of data regarding the charging units’ popularity and consistent usage among customers.
The information was obtained by Southern by monitoring the usage of the EV charging points at its busiest station car parks.
In the north, Liverpool City Council has released new plans to begin lowering emissions in the city as part of its clean air project.
The ‘Breathe Liverpool’ initiative will involve the installation of 100 electrical car charging points across the city centre in car parks, supermarkets, leisure centres and on streets.
Council figures show that particulate air pollution contributes to 4% of all deaths in the city, with long term exposure leading to conditions like heart disease, strokes, lung cancer and respiratory diseases like asthma and chronic bronchitis.
In addition to the new charging points, there are plans to introduce a diesel-free fleet of council vehicles in the city centre by 2019 and across the city by 2024. These would eventually be fully replaced again by electric and compressed and natural gas vehicles.
Maybe that Plug-In Car Grant is worth a second look.