I propose to take Questions Nos. 555, 568 and 569 together.
There are currently almost 100 electric vehicle fast chargers in Ireland - the majority of which are operated by the ESB. There are currently no fast chargers in county Cavan and two in County Monaghan - one operated by the ESB and one by a private sector company.
The Climate Action Fund will provide €10 million to support the ESB to develop a nationwide, state-of-the-art electric vehicle fast charging network which includes the installation of 140 new fast chargers. While the locations of these fast chargers have not been finalised, a provisional map of indicative locations was developed by the ESB and has been published on my Department’s website.
In October, the ESB announced details of the fees that would be charged for use of the fast chargers it operates. These fees, which commenced last month, provide two basic pricing options. Consumers can pay an annual subscription of €5 per annum and avail of fast charging at 29 cents per unit of electricity (kilowatt hour) or pay 33 cent per unit with no annual subscription. In addition there is a fee for overstaying at a fast charger. The ESB have indicated that they also intend to introduce fees for the use of standard chargers (generally located on streets and in car parks) in 2020.
The fees for use of fast chargers is in keeping with the recommendations of the Low Emission Vehicle Taskforce which set out that home charging should be the most cost-effective method of charging, followed by on-street public charging and then fast charging – with fast charging no more expensive than the cost of fuelling a conventionally powered vehicle for the same journey.
The introduction of fees will encourage further investment in charging infrastructure, ensure consumers are incentivised to charge at home and avoid overstaying at fast chargers. Electric vehicle owners, including the Irish Electric Vehicle Owners Association, have been broadly supportive of the ESB's introduction of fees.