13 Jun 2022, 12:07
Sören Amelang

Germany needs fraction of e-car charging points currently planned – energy industry

Clean Energy Wire

Germany’s plans for the rollout of e-car charging infrastructure are greatly exaggerated, the country’s energy industry has warned. The government currently aims for one million public charging points by 2030 to enable its target of having 15 million e-cars on the road by that date, but demand for between 100,000 and 250,000 public chargers is much more realistic as most people are expected to charge at home or at work, and also because the share of rapid chargers increases, energy industry association BDEW said. The lobby group warned against “oversteering” through state subsidy programmes instead of private sector investments and called for realistic targets instead. 

“It is certain that the 'one million' figure is far beyond the realistic need for charging points and creates false expectations among consumers,” BDEW head Kerstin Andreae said. “This figure creates great uncertainty and thus becomes a barrier to entry. Potential e-mobilists need to have a realistic idea of how many charging points are actually needed nationwide in order to make a purchase decision. Unrealistic targets, on the other hand, slow down the switch to electric cars.” Excessive targets also mean unnecessary state spending, the lobby group said. It added that it is impossible to determine exactly how many charging points will be needed in 2030 because that number depends on the number of electric cars on the roads, how fast they can be charged, and on how many people will regularly need public charging points.

A sufficient charging infrastructure is seen as crucial for the rollout of electric mobility, but it is hampered by a chicken-and-egg problem. Comparatively small numbers of electric cars provide little incentive for building chargers, while concerns about a lack of charging infrastructure prevents people from buying e-cars. Public support programmes are considered essential to overcome this hurdle.

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Sören Amelang

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