Home charging is the primary method of charging for the majority of electric vehicles both internationally and in Ireland. Charging at home at night is the most cost-effective and eco-friendly way to charge an electric vehicle. Given the high proportion of homes with driveways and dedicated parking spaces, Ireland has greater capacity for home charging than many other countries. A Government grant of up to €600 is available, via the SEAI, to the purchasers of new and second-hand electric vehicles to support the installation of home chargers. There are currently over 650 standard public charge points and 78 fast chargers as a part of the ESB eCars network. A real-time map showing the charge points, including the status and availability of the charge points, is available on the ESB's website at www.esb.ie/ecars . Currently, there are 10 standard AC charge points (5 chargers) and one fast charger in Monaghan and 10 standard AC charge points (5 chargers) in County Cavan as part of the ESB eCars network.
Under the first call for applications from the Climate Action Fund, I approved funding of up to €10 million to support ESB eCars to develop a nationwide, state-of-the-art electric vehicle fast charging network. This project successfully completed the assessment stage and the validation stage is now underway. The project includes the installation of 90 high-power chargers each of which will be capable of charging two vehicles simultaneously, upgrading 50 existing standard chargers to fast chargers and replacing over 250 existing standard chargers with next generation high reliability models. This is a multi-annual project and is expected to be fully completed by 2022.
The locations of the chargers have not been finalised. However, a provisional map of the planned network, showing indicative locations, was developed by ESB eCars and has been published on my Department’s website. ESB eCars is currently identifying the most appropriate locations for the chargers to be sited. The sites will be identified using the latest software mapping techniques, taking account of information on current charge point usage, traffic volume, accessibility, amenities and grid capacity at the sites.
My Department, in conjunction with the SEAI, is also working on how best to support the provision of greater levels of on-street public charging.