With the number of electric cars in the UK rising steadily, the UK’s charging infrastructure is also growing – and must continue to expand rapidly. Often, the conversation around the need to increase the number of public EV charge points focuses on the difficulty for drivers who do not have access to off-street parking.
But what about those who live in rural areas where EV charging is not as advanced as it is in urban areas?
In its 2021 report ‘Building a comprehensive and competitive electric vehicle charging sector that works for all drivers’, the Competition and Markets Authority highlights that ‘the business case for commercial investment in rapid en-route charging may be weak’ in remote locations, including in rural areas. This may lead to ‘charging deserts’, which the CMA states could ‘deter EV take-up, both for EV drivers living in those areas and for those travelling to or through them’.
For EV driving to become an attractive and achievable prospect, public charging infrastructure must not only be reliable, but distributed appropriately across UK towns, cities and regions, so all drivers can access charge points. The CMA’s research highlights the importance of expanding the EV charging blueprint to more remote areas of the UK, so public interest in driving an EV across select areas of the UK is not inhibited.
Based across the UK, Norway, Germany, Sweden and Austria, Zap-Pay partner Mer is a European EV charging company that is advancing EV charging in order to support the transition to electric transportation.
Indeed, working with a range of local authorities and public sector bodies across the UK, Mer is empowering the EV transition in places including Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole, New Forest, Eastleigh, the Isle of Wight, Dorset and more by installing EV charge points.
In particular, Mer is bringing charging to rural areas of the UK, one such area being Durham. Since 2019, Mer has worked with Durham County Council under the SOSCI (scaling on-street charging infrastructure) project. In this instance, the fact that rural communities in the area were lacking in EV charge points was hindering the uptake of EVs.
Working with the Council, Zap-Pay partner Mer installed over 150 charge points in Durham across four projects. Its work with Durham has been hugely successful, as evidenced in the council receiving the 2022 Best EV Charging Project award from the Municipality Journal.
Mer is bringing EV charging to rural areas of the UK such as Durham.
Following its work with Mer, Durham’s carbon emissions have reduced. With 67,474.3 kWh of usage recorded at Mer charge points – equating to more than 190,000 miles – the Council’s investment in EV charging is ensuring the county is moving closer to its target of a 75% reduction in carbon emissions by 2030.
Bringing EV charging to rural areas that are environmentally-conscious is a core part of Mer’s identity. Certified with the ISO 14001:2015 environmental management system certificate for the supply, installation, operation, and maintenance of EV charging infrastructure, the company aims to be environmentally aware in both its work in the EV charging market and as a company.
Backed by parent company Statkraft’s 125-year legacy in renewables, Zap-Pay partner Mer provides zero carbon, 100% renewable electricity to power its charge points by working with other Statkraft-owned companies.
Win a month’s free charging
As a Zap-Pay partner, Mer charging sessions conducted using Zap-Pay from 9th September to 9th October inclusive will go into a prize draw, offering three Zap-Pay users the chance to win a month’s free charging.
The offer applies to Zap-Pay charging sessions on the more than 3,000 Zap-Pay enabled devices across the country. This means the more times users pay for charging using Zap-Pay from 9th September to 9th October, the more likely they are to win.
Entry is simple: use Zap-Pay to charge your car. Every instance of a Zap-Pay charge from 9th September to 9th October will go into a prize draw. Users will also need to email email@example.com stating they’d like to enter the Zap-Pay prize draw, using the email address registered on their Zap-Map account.
On 10th October, Zap-Map will randomly select a handful of Zap-Pay charging sessions that took place in the allotted time period – to pull out three lucky winners.