Last year, Register Hardware reported on the UK Government's £100m plan to put the UK up with the best in terms of electric car development and infrastructure. At the time, we thought the announcement was too big on headline numbers that didn't quite add up and too low on specifics. Now, however, an announcement has been made by …
More jobs for East Anglia too
Hopefully this increases the chances of Sizewell C being built.
Needs to be a national project.
Whilst I wish them luck, for EV and/or leccy van sales to take off to the point where the scale means subsidies are unneccessary would need a national recharging point scheme. The Government needs draft legislation and to cough up for such a scheme on a scale much larger than £30m, and I can't see the petrol distributors like BP, Shell and Esso volunteering to commit suicide by putting charging points on every petrol station forecourt, especially the motorway services that the van drivers will need covered. Anything less leaves EVs as just town centre toys, which means they will never gain those economies of scale required to escape subsidies.
This actually sounds like a good use of government funds on the face of it - preserve some jobs and kick start innovation - although the devil is in the details. Probably more subs will be needed to get Nissan interested in building the EVs and they'll need to be dicounted again to actually be affordable to regular punters.
However, I can see a way this could be achieved... bend over Mr Goodwin!
"The world will see commercial electric vehicles introduced by 2012"
I always like the spokesperson has really researched their subject. There are plenty of commercial electric vehicles around already. Indeed there have been commercial electric vehicles around for decades. 1912 may have been nearer the mark.
And good luck to them - it deserves to succeed.
The problem would surely be a chicken and egg one though, do you have subsidies for the vehicles, which then have nowhere to charge, or loads of charging points and no vehicles.
I would imagine that it would be a bit of both, put some charging stations up in car parks and parking bays where they will get used, and subsidies for the initial users, since hopefully later vehicles will get to be cheaper anyway.
Shame we didn't choose to go for electric vehicles at the dawn of the car age - we'd have much better batteries as well as vehicles by now.
The North East?
So its going to be made in Aberdeen?
The flames are just the St Fergus flarestack.
Immigration quotas explained?
Does this explain one of the unusual quotas in the Border Agency's shopping list which surfaced last November?
(The links star from: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/11/11/visa_job_list/, if Friday afternoon is really that boring)
In their immigration quotas there was a perceived need for several thousand electricity distribution wiremen, which at the time was rather puzzling.
It still doesn't explain the anticipated role of another few thousand pipeline welders. Helping fill empty holes in the North Sea fields with CO2?.
Another unusual choice of preferred occupation, showing a predilection for ballet dancers, might have been nothing more than perks of the job.
@ Matt Bryant
"I can't see the petrol distributors like BP, Shell and Esso volunteering to commit suicide by putting charging points on every petrol station forecourt"
This actually wouldn't be suicide for these companies - they make very little from forecourt petrol any more. The party that would REALLY suffer is HM Treasury, who take something like 83p in every pound from petrol sales.
Black helicopter, because... well, it's obvious, innit?
Why should public money be spent on a plug-in recharging infrastructure?
But will they mandate a standard nationwide connector design
It sounds trivial but I think this will be a key element in a level playing field.
Anyone who makes EV's knows they have a shot at the market. They can see (as can their customers) the network of locations they can tap into UK wide. Provided they are all compatible to begin with. Note a charge point could have more than one connector into a vehicle to "parellel load" their charge. I think commercial van drivers could handle this level of complexity.
The next issue will be the leccy companies tariffs for using it.
Buy why no word from London? The congestion charge should make this kind of vehicle a serious player.
Don't worry. They'll find a way to tax our bollox off for the 'leccy.
As always, make it worth people's while: offer three years' free parking in bays and at meters if using an electric vehicle, appropriately labelled if necessary. It can't be beyond the wits of manufacturers and developers to collaborate with local authorities on this: it'd be in all their interests.