Europe faces need for significant increase in EV charging points

The number of electric vehicle (EV) public charging points will have to grow fifteen-fold by 2030 to meet EU climate goals, according to Transport & Environment (T&E).

On 8 January, T&E published a report in which it mapped out a public charging plan for Europe. There are set to be between 33mn EVs under the EU’s current policy scenario and 44mn in its climate neutral one by 2030, the report noted. To reach the latter target will require the number of public chargers available in the EU to reach 3mn by 2030 – up from 185,000 today.

T&E proposed a new methodology – the Public Charging supply metric – to deliver an effective future-proof infrastructure framework, ensuring charging infrastructure keeps pace with the growing e-mobility market, post-2020. The Public Charging supply metric proposes weighing charge points based on how much energy they provide to the EV fleet and how available they are to the public, rather than simply counting each charge point as one. It recommended that the metric is used to set the EU public charging infrastructure deployment targets for each country for 2025 and 2030, corresponding to 1.3mn public charge points EU-wide by 2025 and close to 3mn by 2030. It estimated this would see one-off investments in the deployment of public charge points reach €1.8bn in 2025 and €2.9bn in 2030.

As well as the required quantity of charge points, T&E called for a European public charging “masterplan” to ensure full coverage of all European road networks; prices to be fair, offered in €/kWh alongside an automatic authentication system and an ability to pay ad hoc, ensuring simplicity and transparency; and for charging systems to be smart, making them able to align charging events with the generation of renewable electricity. It added that new EU regulation should set minimum targets for chargers on parking spots of medium and large commercial properties – such as large shops and sports facilities.

T&E stressed that the shift to EVs presented a multi-billion euro market opportunity for European industry in the grid works and the manufacturing, installation and maintenance of the charging equipment. It added that the new European Commission and its EU Green Deal had a key part to play in making the e-mobility transition a success, warning that it was essential for both the climate emergency and as a building block for the EU’s transition to a zero-emission economy.