UK company council urges government to invest in charging

UK company council urges government to invest in charging


Seven companies in the UK have come together to form the Electric Vehicle Fleet Accelerator, and have pledged to convert their fleets to electric vehicles by 2030. In return, they are demanding a range of measures from the government to help with the transition.

The seven companies are BP, BT, Direct Line Group, Royal Mail, ScottishPower, Severn Trent and Tesco. Together, their collective fleets comprise around 70,000 vehicles.

The group, which has named itself the ‘Electric Vehicle Fleet Accelerator’, grew out of Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s ‘Build Back Better Business Council’, which the organizers say “brings together CEOs of companies that own and operate some of the largest van fleets in the UK and companies involved with infrastructure, EV charging, retail and insurance and repair”.

The subsidy measures the companies have asked for are also designed to strengthen the burgeoning UK electric vehicle market, the companies say. Procurement of the electric delivery vans would be done locally, and the group’s recommendations would entail the government making a private sector investment of £50 billion in infrastructure and fleets over next five years. This would include “future-proofing” the grid and introducing charging standards, alongside the expansion of public charging networks.

“The rapid take up of electric vehicles will be vital if Britain is to hit its climate change targets. We are already accelerating investment in the energy networks that support a step change in charge points,” said Ofgem CEO Jonathan Brearley.

“We are reducing costs for installing new charging stations and building a market that will make sure that cars can charge at the cheapest possible time.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson added: “I wholeheartedly welcome this commitment by leading employers to fully electrify their van fleets by 2030. This announcement will be a major boost to British vehicle production. The government is committed to providing the electric charging points and other infrastructure the UK needs as we build back greener.”