Thursday, 21 November 2019

Questions (200, 201)

Tony McLoughlin

Question:

200. Deputy Tony McLoughlin asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment his plans to introduce new fast electric car chargers in the Sligo area; the grants he will make available for businesses to develop these chargers privately; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [48475/19]

View answer

Tony McLoughlin

Question:

201. Deputy Tony McLoughlin asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment his plans to make additional electrical resources and capacity available off the grid network system to power fast electric chargers for service stations and other major destinations located in the northwest region; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [48476/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Communications)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 200 and 201 together.

The Climate Action Plan, which set a target of 936,000 electric vehicles to be on the road in Ireland by 2030, includes a range of actions to support the uptake of electric vehicles. These actions include developing the charging network to stay sufficiently ahead of demand.

There are currently over 650 standard public charge points and 96 fast chargers (the majority of which are operated by the ESB) in Ireland. A real-time map showing the ESB charge point locations, including the status and availability of these charge points, is available on the ESB's website at www.esb.ie/ecars.

Under the first call for applications from the Climate Action Fund, I approved funding of up to €10 million which will support the ESB to develop a nationwide, state-of-the-art electric vehicle fast charging network, with the ESB also investing €10 million. This project includes the installation of 140 fast chargers consisting of 90 150kW chargers (each of which will be capable of charging two vehicles simultaneously) and upgrading 50 existing standard chargers to 50kW chargers The project will also involve replacing over 500 existing standard charge points 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 that will be installed as part of this project have not been finalised. However, a provisional map of the planned network, showing indicative locations, was developed by the ESB and has been published on my Department’s website.

Budget 2020 provided €36 million in funding to my Department to support the uptake of electric vehicles and supporting charging infrastructure. In August, I announced funding to support the rollout of on-street public charge points for electric vehicles. A total of €2 million has been provided in Budget 2020 to support the installation of up to 400 on-street chargers in 2020. All Local Authorities can now apply for funding to the SEAI for this support to develop on-street charging infrastructure.

Businesses can already avail of accelerated capital allowances for the purchase and installation of electric vehicle charging infrastructure. This enables businesses to invest in energy efficient equipment, including electric charging infrastructure, and deduct the full cost of such equipment in the year of purchase rather than over 8 years.