We are on the verge of a profound change in how we move people, goods and service around our country, which is driven by technological development and the need to react to climate change.
In July 2018, the government published the Road to Zero strategy which aims to put the UK at the forefront of the design and manufacturing of zero-emission vehicles, but the regulatory framework proposed will mean that the property industry will need to prepare for changes to come.
What is The Road to Zero strategy?
The Road to Zero strategy sets out a comprehensive package of support to reach our mission for all new cars and vans to be effectively zero emission by 2040. Since 2018, the government has worked to implement this strategy to improve the air we breathe, help ensure we meet our future carbon budgets and build a new market for zero-emission vehicle technologies in the UK. The role of electric vehicles in achieving these aims is extremely important and will require the introduction of new changes that will affect all industries in order to facilitate the transition from petrol or diesel-fuelled transport to zero-emission transport.
Progress has been made, but further work is needed to drive electric vehicle uptake, deliver our Industrial Strategy mission and rise to the new challenge of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
The Road to Zero strategy is central to delivering these aims as it outlines policies that will ensure new buildings and developments are ready for the future. The regulatory changes proposed will result in an increase of thousands of charge points across the UK, in homes and at key destinations, like new office blocks and supermarkets. These policies represent the most ambitious regulatory packages globally and will help ensure the UK develops one of the best electric vehicle infrastructure networks in the world, according to the latest guidance from the government.
How will the Road to Zero strategy impact developers?
It is anticipated that the vast majority of electric vehicle owners will choose to charge at home, meaning that developers will be required to ensure that the houses they build are electric vehicle (EV) ready by having a charge-point available. The car charging points need to be installed during the new build phase otherwise retrofitting will cost the consumer an average of £1064 extra on each plot according to the recent survey.
Distribution Network Operators (DNO) will distribute electricity to these charging points differently, depending on the region, and will, therefore, have different requirements that will need to be met by developers when installing EV charging points. The challenge is deciding how to implement and standardise a single design that is replicable across all regions of the UK while taking into account these varying DNO requirements.
The best way to do this is for developers to contact an expert who will be able to work with Independent Network Operators to produce an innovative solution delivering a standardised design, applicable to the whole of the UK, using a land rights approach to site access. The likely outcome of such an umbrella solution would mean cost savings and connections that are energised faster for clients.