UnitedFuture’s policy geared to increase EV ownership

UnitedFuture’s policy geared to increase EV ownership

Peter Dunne

Peter Dunne

UnitedFuture leader Peter Dunne, who recently announced the party’s own EV policy, attended the opening of an electric vehicle (EV) charging station at Staglands Wildlife Reserve.

The party’s policy allows a grant of up to $5000 or 30% of cost – whichever is smaller – for the purchase of an EV or EV infrastructure. This means a customer purchasing a Nissan Leaf for approximately $15,000 will receive a discount of a third of the cost – a discount which also pertains to the construction of charging stations.

This policy is in place, according to Dunne, because government’s current policies do not target the key drivers that will affect EV ownership.

“The point of the policy is to recognise that the future of transport must be carbon neutral and what we need is a critical mass of EVs in New Zealand as a base to build from,” he says.

According to Wellington EV owner and enthusiast Sigurd Magnusson, who spoke at the launch, there is a growing level of infrastructure appearing in New Zealand:

“SH1 will have fast chargers almost every 80km from Whangarei to Bluff end of this year. Steve West from Charge.Net is largely responsible for delivering this brilliant accomplishment. The next challenge will be adding capacity at sites to avoid queuing,” he says.

UnitedFuture’s policy targets this type of initiative and seeks to support faster growth and more innovation in this area, says Dunne.

“We are now seeing stations being built that can charge a vehicle in 20 minutes; that is the kind of infrastructure our policy tries to attract to New Zealand to make it as easy to drive an EV that produces zero carbon emissions as it is to drive a fossil-fuel based vehicle.

“This policy directly targets the issues that currently impede electric vehicle ownership.

“It is undoubtable that EVs are the future of transport in New Zealand. We need to be following countries like France and Norway that are really leading the charge in terms of driving electric.

“What people want is a vehicle that is cost effective and a vehicle that they can be confident will take them from point A to point B.”

Government has set a target of having 64,000 electric vehicles in New Zealand by 2021.

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