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UK businesses get funding for EV charger installs

The British Department for Transport (DfT) will offer UK businesses £300 (AU$486) for every electric vehichle plug-in charger installed on-site in a scheme starting late November.

The DfT announced in October it would offer £7.5million (AU$12million) to UK workplaces for the initiative of installing charging stations for staff and vehicle fleets to encourage the uptake of EVs.

The Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS) was published by the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) saying 25,000 new EV installations would be made across Britain.

To access the scheme, businesses will need to submit details of where the installations will be made, disclosure of the need for charging stations or the deliberate encouragement of eligible EV uptake, plus conditions of use.

Installers will accept the cost of the work instead of the business and claim the grant from OLEV as payment after submitting proof of installation. Up to 20 charge points are available to any one installation, irrespective of site numbers, and available off-street parking.

Unfortunately it if still up to Australian businesses, organisations and local government to do the heavy lifting on EV take-up.

Australia’s CSIRO is one of the most recent large organisations to install its own EV charging stations at its Discovery Centre in Black  img_5555Mountain, Canberra.

Announced in April this year, the environmental science and research body installed two Delta AC EV Chargers for two of the healthy 10-strong Nissan LEAF fleet it put into service this year.

“We are rolling out these new electric vehicles across seven of our sites to enable petrol-free motoring within CSIRO’s pool of fleet vehicles,” general manager Building and Infrastructure Services, Mark Wallis said in a statement at the time. “With the addition of solar PV panels at our sites, we aim to generate more than enough renewable energy to charge and run the cars…the latest in a raft of initiatives to lower emissions, reduce waste and improve the sustainability of operations across CSIRO,” Wallis said.

Currently only the ACT offers Luxury Car Tax exemptions for EVs, with no other significant EV incentives existing in Australia. Less than 2000 electric vehicles were sold in Australia, mostly to commercial buyers, compared with 1.1 million new cars sold in 2015. This is however significantly better than the 302 EVs sold in 2013.

In March this year the Australian Tax Office ruled businesses can claim deductions for the use of electric vehicles under the ruling as internal combustion engine vehicles. Previously, the ruling only applied to engine capacity, to which an EV did not equate given the lack of internal combustion engine. Vehicles can now claim 66c per km, up to 5000km, meaning a maximum of $2200 saved. Dead-easy mileage for a fleet vehicle.