EV charge points to be installed in new buildings
Developers will be forced by law to provide electric vehicle (EV) charge points in new buildings.
Scottish government ministers have unveiled proposals to support and encourage the growing uptake of electric vehicles by ensuring that all new homes, including flats, with a dedicated car parking space are built with charging facilities.
The new building regulations will mean that new residential buildings with a parking space have at least one EV charge point with a minimum 7kW rating.
For new non-residential buildings with more than 10 parking spaces, 1 in every 10 would be expected to provide an EV charge point socket with a minimum 7kW rating.
There are also requirements for residential and non-residential buildings undergoing major renovation to provide charge points.
The announcement from Transport Scotland is part of a commitment to banning the sale of new petrols cars but also came just hours after a survey was published showing Scotland was the slowest of Britain’s regions and nations at installing new EV points over the past year.
The survey showed that the number of new EV charging points in Scotland grew by just 16.5% in the 12 months to July this year, against 40% in the best performing areas.
The Scottish Government will introduce legislation by the end of the year to enforce the new regulations on the building industry.
Minister for Transport Jenny Gilruth said: “We know that it is important to make charging as easy as possible to help make the switch to EV. I’m pleased to confirm that we will introduce legislation to ensure all new buildings are EV enabled.
“This step will help future proof Scotland’s buildings as we transition to a net zero transport system. This supports our ambition of phasing out the need for new petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2030 as part of our response to the global climate emergency.
“We’ve already seen private developers delivering EV charge points as part of new builds in Scotland. They recognise that charge points are an attractive feature to have and offer convenience as part of a wider charging mix. These changes will provide a minimum standard that developers will need to consider going forward.
“We also know that many households will not have access to dedicated parking spaces and that’s why earlier this year we announced our £60m EV Infrastructure Fund, to ensure that all households across Scotland can be confident that EV charging will be local, accessible and that they too can switch to zero emission.”
Tom Gibbs, quality, environmental and sustainability manager and Springfield Properties said: “Sustainability is at our core across the Springfield Group and we strive to do the right thing across our operations, whether it be the design of our developments, our engagement with stakeholders or in the way we look after our customers and employees.
“In 2018, when grants for electric charging points were widely available, we decided to include the cabling for electric car charging in all of our houses.
“With an electricity supply to the most convenient point of the house, typically by the driveway or the garage, the installation of a charging point is less intrusive for our customers for when they decide to make the switch to electric while future proofing their home.”
Local Authorities throughout Scotland are being encouraged to partner with private enterprise to meet the EV charging needs of communities, writes Norrie Hunter.
According to Transport Scotland, this would have the “potential to double the size” of the public charging network over the next few years.
A spokesperson said that both central government and local government, adding “we’re clear on the need for the private sector and industry to step forward at pace”.
Entering into private partnerships could ramp-up the widespread demand now coming particularly from those drivers who have switched to EVs, but lack home charging facilities.