Royal Dutch Shell plans to install 50,000 on-street electric vehicle charging stations across the UK by 2025 in a move that could push for the uptake of EVs and aiding the country’s transport decarbonisation plans

Shell will be installing 50,000 on-street charging stations for electric vehicles in the UK over the next four years, according to a statement published on Wednesday, September 1. The oil giant has also offered to provide financial support to local authorities over installation costs. 

The transportation sector accounts for almost a quarter of total greenhouse gas emissions in the UK in 2019. The UK recently unveiled a transport decarbonisation plan that sets a goal of banning all new diesel and petrol lorries in the country by 2040, as well as a commitment in electrifying all government cars and vans by 2027. 

For an effective transition to electric vehicles and to meet those goals will require an extensive charging network and infrastructure. Britain currently has about 3,600 chargers across the country but the UK Climate Change Committee (CCC) states at least 150,000 public charging stations are needed by the middle of the decade.

What’s more, about two-thirds of UK households don’t have off-street parking, according to the National Audit Office, while a third do not have driveways. “It’s vital to speed up the pace of EV charger installation across the UK and this aim and financing offer is designed to help achieve that,” said David Bunch, Shell’s UK country chair. “Whether at home, at work or on-the-go, we want to give drivers across the UK accessible EV charging options, so that more drivers can switch to electric.”

The Office for Zero Emission Vehicles is currently responsible for about 75% of the costs of installing public on-street charging stations. Shell has said they are prepared to cover a quarter of the remaining total costs, in accordance with commercial terms. The company’s new installation target would also contribute a third of the amount of charging stations CCC proposed to meet 2050 decarbonisation goals. 

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