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Here are some suggestions for how councils can help encourage the uptake of EV. I welcome your feedback on this. Many thanks to Sigurd Magnusson for putting these ideas together.

The key ideas are:

  • Fleet pilot.
  • Fleet transition.
  • Public charging.
  • Promote what the council is doing.
Website content Publish why private individuals should own electric cars, and organisations should buy them in fleets. Example.
Fleet pilot Buy or lease 5 electric cars. Sign-write them as obviously electric. Put slow chargers in council office carpark so they can be charged overnight, but position them if possible, to allow visitors to use them for free. Encourage staff to use the cars widely, parked out and about and at public events, so they build public awareness.
Fleet transition policy Update fleet policy such that by default all new cars are electric, with exceptions granted by management for specialist vehicles only. Permit staff to use cars for non-work use (at their cost) in evenings and weekends to save staff money (electricity is cheaper than petrol per kilometer of travel) and so the staff get familiar with the cars and the cars are visible in the community. Electrifying the entire fleet ensures the council maintains and grows financial savings, delivers environmental benefits and inspires other organisations to follow.
Public charging Install at least one high profile, sign posted, car charger for 24/7 public use e.g. town center, near shops, amenities or green space.
Promote Publish the above achievements, so that residents, visitors and organisations gain awareness and confidence with electric vehicles and make the switch! Have your cars on display at major events or fairs with staff.
Public Incentives Form and implement policy incentives that support electric car adoption. (E.g. free car parking and use of bus lanes, until there are 10,000 EVs in the region)