Electric vehicle charging infrastructure growing

  • Simon Bridges

Transport Minister Simon Bridges has opened new electric vehicle (EV) charging stations in Nelson, Thames and Auckland as part of International Drive Electric Week.

The international event runs until 18 September and is the biggest ever celebration of EVs in New Zealand, increasing from just a few events in 2015 to more than 50 events around the country this year.

“Public charging infrastructure has an important role to help ease range anxiety and facilitate longer distance travel,” Mr Bridges.

“While the cheapest and easiest way to charge an electric vehicle (EV) is overnight at home, having public charging infrastructure enables New Zealanders to use EVs for longer distance travelling.

“New Zealand started with one public fast charging station, in Northland, in May 2014.  Just over two years later we have more than 30 public fast charging stations and that number is growing by the week. More than 100 other charging stations have also opened up around the country.”

The new fast charger in Thames is a first for the Thames/Coromandel area.

“Thames provides an important link between Auckland and Tauranga and the Coromandel.  As a popular tourist route, I hope the presence of a fast charger also allows visitors to our country to consider an EV for their rental vehicle.

“The new charging station at Lynn Mall in West Auckland fills a gap in the city’s charging infrastructure. Installing charging stations at destinations such as shopping malls makes it easy for EV owners to top up their car while running their errands.” 

Mr Bridges also opened Network Tasman’s fast charger at the Richmond Library in Nelson, the first of several planned by the company over the next six months.

“We’ve set a target to get 64,000 EVs on New Zealand roads by 2021 but it will be a team effort.  Businesses, government, local government and member organisations all have a role to play in reaching this target.

“I have asked my agencies to support councils and the private sector in developing public charging infrastructure by providing clear guidance and information around the infrastructure, and clarifying the regulatory framework.”

More information can be found at www.electricvehicles.govt.nz.