Scotland has more publicly-funded electric vehicle charge points than any other part of the UK, it has emerged.
Research by HSBC Commercial Banking found that there are 3,821 publicly-funded charge points for electric vehicles in the UK overall, which works out at one for every 16,787 people.
In Scotland there are 743, or one for every 7,127 people. Only the North East of England has a better ratio – one for every 3,931 people – and only Northern Ireland and South-East England (excluding London) have a figure above the national average. Yorkshire and Wales have the lowest ratios.
After Scotland, the second highest number of publicly-funded charge points is in North-East England (664), followed by South-East England (572).
HSBC also noted that while around 47,000 plug-in cars were registered last year, only 173 new, publicly-funded charge points became available. It warns that further private investment is needed in infrastructure.
“Charge points are a vital barometer for the health of the electric vehicle market,” Scott McClurg, Head of Energy & Sustainability for HSBC Corporate Banking, said. “Infrastructure is fundamental to the successful transition to emission-free driving and so far the UK is falling short in many regions.
“While the major forecourt owners plan how to balance rising demand for charge points with the ongoing need for petrol and diesel pumps, there is an opportunity for private investors to plug the gap. National Grid recently announced plans to overcome the challenge of long-distance electric vehicle travel. Urgent attention must now be given to local, urban solutions as more consumers and businesses transition to electric vehicles.”
He added: “If Scotland is to shift to electric vehicles in the long term, the overall volume of charge points has to improve. While there are clear opportunities to meet rising demand through the private sector, local authorities and central government are also looking closely at this space to ensure the right infrastructure is in place.”
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