The Scottish government has outlined its plans for expanding electric vehicle charging infrastructure in the country.
The fund will provide up to £60m to local authorities over the next four years, with approximately half of the funding set to be invested by the private sector.
According to the government, the fund has the potential to double the size of the current public charging network in Scotland.
Cabinet secretary for Net-zero, Energy, and Transport Michael Matheson also announced £350,000 to support six pathfinder projects across Scotland in a measure designed to accelerate new strategies and help better identify charge-point requirements across Scotland.
Matheson said: “I’m pleased to outline a new vision for the public electric vehicle charging network. Even though we prioritise funding in active travel and sustainable public transport, cars and vans will still have a role to play and particularly in rural areas.
“To meet our climate targets, we need these vehicles to be electric, and so we require a seamless network of public electric vehicle chargers, that works for everyone, all of the time.
“Our draft vision provides a clear picture of what electric vehicle charging networks must deliver for drivers across Scotland, and our priorities for achieving those changes.
“We need a just transition, where accessibility, availability, and reliability is key and where no one is left behind from the positive shift to zero-emission transport system – including rural and island communities.
“We have invested over £50m to create a network with over 2,100 public charge points across Scotland.”
He continued: “With demand for electric vehicles rapidly increasing thanks to government incentives and support – public and private sector partnerships will now be key in attracting investment and scaling provision at pace.
“The £60m Public Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Fund will draw in and smooth commercial investment so that the future charging network works for everyone, while at the same time potentially doubling the size of our public network here in Scotland.
“I understand the concerns people have raised around the potential for charging infrastructure impeding pedestrian access to pavements and their ability to move around freely. We can do things better.
“And I am pleased to confirm that we will soon begin working with design specialists at V&A Dundee to plan a public network that works for all.
“This groundbreaking approach will see people’s diverse needs and interests shape the future network.”
Image: Cabinet secretary for Net-zero, Energy, and Transport Michael Matheson
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