The increasing number of electric vehicles means there will soon be a shortage of space for them to charge, the CEO of Fuels Ireland has said.
Transport Minister Eamon Ryan hopes there will be one million electric vehicles on Irish roads by the year 2030 and from 2035 no new combustible vehicles can be sold in the European Union.
The shift from petrol and diesel cars to electric vehicles is essential if Ireland is to reach net zero carbon emissions but Kevin McPartland said these new cars will require a lot of space to recharge.
“In the smaller, urban locations, the site is limited,” he told Moncrieff.
“That’s going to be something which becomes a problem as we move towards more and more electric vehicles charging… because for electric vehicle charging, people need to stay there for 20 minutes, half an hour, perhaps even a little bit longer.
“They need to park and that means the turning point is actually quite slow, so you need quite a few of them if you’re going to do that in any reasonable way in urban areas.”
Mr McPartland said those who wish to install EV charging points typically “have planning issues” and the cost can run into hundreds of thousands.
“There are some sites where to put these ultra-fast charging points that we want to put in [and] you’ll have to buy an electricity substation - which can be half a million quid,” he said.
“Then you have to pay for the ground works, then you have to pay for the connections.”
Mr McPartland said it has long been the case that there should be “more joined up thinking” in the Government’s transport policy.
“It is definitely fair to say that the transport infrastructure is developed without much thought about the support services that are required,” he said.
“Major roads will be built and only afterwards do we think about putting out a tender for a service station for this new arterial route.”
In the first five months of 2023, 18% of all new cars registered in Ireland were electric - up from 13% in the same period last year.
Main image: Cars charging. Picture by: Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/Sipa USA.