Electric vehicles (EVs) are fast becoming commonplace in the UK. Six years ago, there were only 3,500 on our roads. As of last month, that number had jumped to 249,000.
Estimates vary on how high the sector could grow, but by 2022 clean cars are widely expected to top 1,000,000 – 3% of all road traffic - and could reach over 10,000,000 before the end of the 2020s. The government is also taking steps to encourage new EVs, targeting up to 70% of all new cars to be ultra-low emission by 2030 and announcing a ban on petrol and diesel cars by 2040.
The direction of travel is clear and couldn’t be more urgent. Road transport has long been a major source of climate-wrecking carbon emissions. Official statistics show the transport sector contributes around one fifth of the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions. And while cars are becoming more efficient, emissions have gone up due to a 29% increase in road traffic over the past three decades.
Good Energy was founded to help people tackle climate change by choosing renewable power. Our mission has stayed the same over the past 20 years and will continue that way. Electric vehicles are now a key battleground in the fight against the climate crisis and it’s natural for us to support this technology as it starts to replace the internal combustion engine once and for all.
By 2022, clean cars are widely expected to top 1,000,000 – 3% of all road traffic - and could reach over 10,000,000 by 2030
But what does that look like?
Firstly, we have a new EV tariff which supports drivers charge their vehicles at a lower price with renewable power. The average EV driver could save £80 a year compared to our standard tariff, and it’s fixed until 2021.
Earlier this year we also invested in Zap-Map, a digital EV charging platform which simplifies the experience for drivers, helping them plan routes and share charging points. This app has a large following, with 70,000 monthly users, and we are helping the company develop new, innovative products for the market.
Our latest move is aimed at business. Last month, at the Independent Hotel Show, we launched One Point – a simple, easy-to-use service which supports businesses wanting to offer EV charging to their staff, customers and visitors, powered by 100% renewable energy.
We kicked off the service with a pilot scheme at the Watergate Bay Hotel in Cornwall, managing the installation of four charging points on the premises, with two more planned. The hotel is a longstanding partner and customer of Good Energy so it made sense to start local.
The lessons from the pilot will help us expand One Point to companies up and down the country. We see businesses having a huge role to play in decarbonising the transport sector; an estimated 40% of UK homes do not have access to off-street parking, which means workplace and destination charging will continue to be important for EV drivers in the future.
Electric vehicles are here to stay. Costs are coming down and charge points are going up. We’re adapting our business to support this vital clean technology, giving consumers another way to fight climate change, reduce air pollution, and transform our energy system.