Recent figures have revealed that the Irish Government is facing a race against time to meet its electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure targets. With 2,230 public charging points for EVs currently available nationwide, the government’s allocation of €100 million to develop a top-tier EV charging network by 2025 falls significantly short of the estimated number of chargers needed to support the goal of one million EVs on the roads by the end of the decade.
To address this pressing challenge, the Department of Transport is exploring innovative solutions, such as harnessing the power of lampposts to provide EV charging capabilities. Taking inspiration from successful programs in cities like London, Berlin, and Valencia, where lampposts have been repurposed as EV charging points, Green Party deputy Patrick Costello has urged his party leader, Transport Minister Eamon Ryan, to consider implementing similar strategies in Ireland.
Minister Ryan acknowledges the need for a seamless and robust charging network that caters to situations where home charging is not feasible, such as street charging, residential charging, destination charging, and workplace charging. The government plans to launch a Residential Neighborhood Charging Scheme, designed to mimic home charging and incentivize off-peak charging for residents without access to street parking.
While some local authorities may initially express doubts, Minister Ryan emphasizes the importance of collaboration and working together to make EV charging infrastructure a priority. He highlights the department’s active involvement in supporting local authorities in developing EV infrastructure strategies tailored to the specific needs of their communities. Lamppost charging is just one of the potential solutions being considered to meet projected public-accessible charging needs.
Innovative approaches, like utilizing lampposts for EV charging, offer a creative and practical solution to the challenges faced by EV owners in Ireland. By leveraging existing infrastructure, the government can accelerate the expansion of the charging network and make EV adoption more appealing and convenient for people residing in areas with limited charging options. With concerted effort and collaboration among various stakeholders, Ireland can make strides towards achieving its ambitious EV charging goals.
1. How many public charging points for EVs are currently available in Ireland?
As of July 2023, there are approximately 2,320 connectors (or 2,100 chargers that can be used simultaneously) nationwide. This represents a notable increase from the 1,700 charging points in September 2022.
2. How much funding has the government allocated for the development of the EV charging network?
The government has allocated €100 million for the development of a top-tier EV charging network, with the aim of achieving it by 2025.
3. What is the projected number of chargers needed to support one million EVs on the roads by the end of the decade?
To power the goal of one million EVs in Ireland, the government estimates that by 2030, a total of 712,000 kW (kilowatts) of charging capacity will be needed, requiring between 3,200 and 6,200 charging points nationwide.
4. How does the government plan to enable EV charging in residential neighborhoods?
To facilitate charging in residential neighborhoods, a Residential Neighborhood Charging Scheme will be launched, providing EV charging for residents without access to street parking. This scheme aims to mimic home charging and incentivize off-peak charging at convenient locations for residents’ homes.
5. How does the government intend to ensure collaboration with local authorities for the development of EV infrastructure?
The Department of Transport is committed to actively supporting local authorities in developing EV infrastructure strategies. These strategies will consider appropriate solutions for specific locations, including destination charging and localized solutions for neighborhoods, such as lamppost charging.