40 Million Places to Charge your Electric Vehicle by 2030. And Maybe Too Many Too Soon in China

Aug. 15, 2018
New research on electric vehicle chargers finds that there will be 40 million charging points by 2030. But has China peaked too soon? RenewEconomy’s Bridie Schmidt explores the issue.

New research on electric vehicle charger growth finds that there will be 40 million charging points by 2030. But has China peaked too soon? RenewEconomy’s Bridie Schmidt explores the issue.

Electric vehicle sales are trending upwards almost everywhere on the globe, and there’s not much argument about the fact that for this to continue, an effective charging network is an absolute necessity.

A recent study released by Wood Mackenzie suggests that this indeed is happening, and penetration of EV charging add up to 40 million charging points globally within the next 12 years.  But in China, they have built too many chargers too soon.

This figure is made up of both public and private chargers, according to Wood McKenzie subsidiary GTM Research, and is based around the prediction that 11 percent of all vehicle sales by 2030 will be electric.

Urged on by financial incentives and government policy, many countries are making deals with charging infrastructure companies to bring their networks in line with increasing EV sales.

These include  Australia’s Tritium whose output of high-powered fast chargers has dramatically increased from 720 to 6,000 units a year following a range of deals they’ve recently struck across Europe.

“The EV charging infrastructure ecosystem is very complex, and most projects require strong partnerships between both public and private stakeholders to deploy necessary infrastructure,” said Timotej Gavrilovic, the lead author of the report.

Wood Mackenzie estimate that over a quarter of the chargers predicted to be installed globally will be in the USA, where the industry will yield $US18.6 million by 2030 — and that while 1.2 million of those will be public chargers, the number of private chargers will be tenfold.

Source: Wood Mackenzie via RenewEconomy

Europe would outdo America in terms of public infrastructure however, with the research company seeing an explosion of up to 1.6 million EV chargers. Numbers of residential chargers for Europe is expected to come in at a little less than a quarter of the global total, at 9 million.

China is on track for 1 million EV sales this year, according to figures gleaned from Chinese site Sohu by the University of WA’s Professor Ray Wills, but Gavrilovic comments that while charging infrastructure being built by the Asian economic giant was predicted in 2016 to rise to 60 percent penetration by 2030, they may have peaked too early.

“The utilization levels are really low,” he commented.

Source: Twitter/Prof Ray Wills via RenewEconomy

Speaking with RE, Wills commented that China’s strong EV adoption was based on a number of factors, from deliberate investment in lithium contracts to a pure need for cleaner air due to extreme air pollution.

Gavriloc added regarding India, which has been predicted to become the world’s 3rd largest EV economy, that it “is definitely a geography to keep an eye on.”

This article originated on RenewEconomy and was reposted with permission.

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