With fossil fuel vehicles on the way out and electric on the way in, developing mobility for the 21st century is posing urban challenges. How to develop reliable and efficient charging networks? City authorities or governments – who is paving the way, and how?
During a round table in Paris, organised by La Fabrique de la Cité on 10 October 2018, speakers from France, the Netherlands, and Norway presented and debated the issues at stake.
“We started steps to clean up the city air around 10 years ago, with a focus on transport because it has the biggest influence on emissions,” said Bertold Plugboer, project manager, Amsterdam Elektrisch. “The initial batch of 100 electric charging points has since grown to 2,800 today, and we are recording 17,000 unique users and 80,000 charging sessions monthly.”
The electric vehicle (EV) charging network in Amsterdam is spread across both public and private space (eg car parks in the basements of apartment buildings), and also includes 30 (to date) fast charging points available primarily for taxi drivers, but which the public can pay to use too.
Carrots and sticks – the power of incentives to get things moving
In a bid to reduce local air pollution, many European cities have set cut-off dates for banning diesel and petrol vehicles from their centres. At the same time, incentives are needed to bring EVs to market in their stead (encouraging people to use public transport is, of course, important too).