REA and UK EVSE merge to deliver unified voice on electric vehicle infrastructure

The REA has announced that members of the UK Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment Association (UK EVSE) will join its 75-strong group of companies involved in the delivery and operations of electric vehicle (EV) chargers and services in the UK.

REA and UK EVSE merge to deliver unified voice on electric vehicle infrastructure

Some EVSE UK members will join the REA’s EV Steering Group and many will gain access to other REA industry groups

UK EVSE, which was established in 2013, will merge with the REA and join the group’s EV members forum that was set up in 2017. The two groups believe that the merger will help unify the industry by delivering a body that is better resourced and can integrate both the burgeoning EV charging sector and the renewables sector in the UK.

REA’s chief executive Dr Nina Skorupska CBE, said: “We are stronger when we work together. The integration of UK EVSE with the REA’s EV Forum means centralising resources, concentrating collective expertise, and ensuring coherent communications to Government.

We hope that this move will both deepen the REA’s expertise in electric vehicle infrastructure but also empower our new members with knowledge and skill in our other work areas, such as that in solar and energy storage, all of which are converging at a rapid rate. We welcome our new members and will continue to work to provide a progressive and effective voice for the charging infrastructure and wider renewable energy sector.”  

UK EVSE provided an industry voice for organisations working in the area of EV charging infrastructure, which includes charge point management and control of recharging and payment services.

UK EVSE members include Siemens, EO Charging, Cenex and New Motion – which has been acquired by Shell. Some members will join the REA’s EV Steering Group and many will gain access to other REA industry groups, including the Solar Forum and the Energy Storage Forum.

Policy required

Last week, the Department for Transport (DfT) said the UK is on track to deliver a policy roadmap for decarbonising “every single mode of transport” in line with the UK’s 2050 net-zero target this year.

For journeys that are taken by vehicle – domestic or business – the DfT is aiming to ensure that only zero-emission vehicles are on UK roads by mid-century. It states that this transition will be brought about through a combination of regulatory changes, support for vehicle innovation and supply, investing in refuelling and recharging infrastructure and readying the energy system for increased demand.

Boris Johnson notably moved the UK’s ban on new petrol and diesel car sales from 2040 to 2035 recently. While this delighted green groups and is aligned with the Committee on Climate Change’s (CCC) advice, several corporates, trade bodies and consumer bodies warned that a more holistic approach would be needed, given current issues such as high upfront vehicle prices, a lack of mature circular economy solutions for batteries and the fact that vehicle sales are significantly outpacing charging and refuelling infrastructure rollouts.

On the latter point, PwC, for example, has claimed that UK’s EV stock reached 134,000 vehicles in 2017 – a 54% increase on 2016 figures – but that there are only 13,500 charging points to support these vehicles. Similar findings have been recorded by the likes of the Department for Transport (DfT) and Bloomberg New Energy Finance (Bloomberg NEF). Indeed, this line of thinking was also reiterated in this week’s progress report to Parliament by the Committee on Climate Change (CCC), which slams the Government for its “ramshackle” climate change policies – particularly in the transport, agriculture and built environment spheres.

Transport Minister Rachel Maclean said: “People in the UK should have the best opportunities to make the switch to cleaner cars, that’s why we are working closely with industry to bring world-leading expertise into creating, running and charging these vehicles.

“This merger signals an important joining of forces for the sector, and I hope to see them power forward more innovations for drivers everywhere.”

Matt Mace

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