The public EV charging network has received a significant boost with government co-funding announced today for over 100 EV chargers - with over 200 charging ports altogether - across New Zealand, and many planned to be up and running on key holiday routes by Christmas this year.
Minister of Energy and Resources Dr Megan Woods says the focus is on major highways, throughfares, and places New Zealanders regularly visit while out and about, such as shopping.
"Our EV sales keep increasing month on month, so we're working with the industry to ensure charging capacity grows, and in front of demand," said Megan Woods.
"We have hit the previous EV charging target of one charger each 75km on our State highways, but our new vision is that New Zealanders should be able to charge where and when they need to. The projects that have received co-funding today show the full mix of options EV drivers can expect."
EECA (Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority) research shows that while 80% of people do more than half of their charging at home, Kiwis also need a range of options available to them while out and about, and especially on longer journeys.
"New chargers will be situated at places like shopping centres where people may be parked for up to a couple of hours," said Megan Woods.
"To help with longer journeys, the government is co-funding high-speed chargers on main highways at 19 popular holiday routes including Bombay, Turangi and Wanaka. Also included are the country's first charging 'hubs' where up to ten high-speed chargers will sit alongside amenities like food options and toilets."
The government's draft National EV Charging Strategy - Charging our Future - proposed a target for hubs to be situated about every 150-200km across the State highway network.
The announced projects come from three rounds of the Low Emission Transport Fund (LETF), administered by EECA. Altogether, 16 projects will receive $11 million in government co-funding, matched by $13.5 million in private investment.
Danusia Wypych, ChargeNet's CEO, says that when partnering with EECA, ChargeNet leverages data-driven insights and valuable customer feedback to strategically invest co-funding into communities that will support current and future EV drivers.
"We are excited to bring eight new electric vehicle charging sites across New Zealand's regional centres. Our focus is on providing fast charging in the right place, at the right time and at the right speed.
"The co-funding will support improving charging capacity ahead of the anticipated summer demand and build network coverage in regional areas and holiday hotspots throughout the country."
Craig Marshall, Head of We.EV at WEL networks, says, "The LETF funding has been instrumental in enabling both the viability and speed to market of new public charging stations and is key to meeting the future charging demand.
"These sites are not necessarily economic from day one, however we need to build out the infrastructure to meet increasing demand and the funding assists business to bridge that gap.
"The size of the chargers we are looking to install now has increased enabling faster charge times and allowance for future upgrades."
Kieran Turner, Head of EV Charging, Z Energy, echoed the role of the partnership saying, "the support will enable Z to deliver more charging bays sooner at key locations for drivers.
"This includes the ability to put in more capacity ahead of the curve at some of our busiest locations, as well as plugging some of the gaps on people's longer journeys. As part of this work, Z is excited to be partnering with Red Phase Technologies to bring innovation to the industry for our larger sites that will reduce the demand on the electricity grid while enhancing the overall customer experience."
Megan Woods said, "The LETF has been a key driver for the development of the public network.
"The investment will help ensure we are in a good position to reduce emissions from transport. This is critical to hitting New Zealand's net zero goal and avoiding the worst of climate change.
"We are starting to bend the curve on transport emissions; the latest data shows that emissions from household vehicle use fell 2.5% in the December 2022 quarter. We want to not only continue that downward trend but accelerate its pace.
"We will continue to invest in the infrastructure that can help us get there," Megan Woods said.
More information about the confirmed co-funding, and previous rounds, can be found here: Low Emission Transport Fund | EECA.
Notes for editors:
New rounds open
Rounds 11 and 12 of the LETF, covering maritime and off-road vehicles and technology, are now open. RFPs for these rounds close on September 20.
About the LETF:
The Low Emission Transport Fund, administered by EECA, supports the demonstration and adoption of low emission transport technology, innovation, and infrastructure to accelerate the decarbonisation of the New Zealand transport sector.
The fund focusses on activities in the transport sector that move people and/or goods on roads, off-road, and in the marine and aviation sectors to:
Each round of the LETF provides co-funding to a particular area of interest (unlike the previous LEVCF, in which each round welcomed the full range of applications). An announcement will be made in advance of each funding round advising which areas of interest will be included.
Round Six - Public Charging Infrastructure - Destination Charging
JOLT Charge will install 10 25-50kW DC EV chargers. Locations: Henderson, Mt Wellington, Hornby, Papanui, Manurewa, Whangarei, Botany, Silverdale, Napier, Te Atatu.
WEL Networks are installing 2 x 30kW DC chargers in Morrinsville, Waikato.
WEL Networks are installing 2 x 30kW DC chargers at 409 Grey St, Hamilton.
WEL Networks are installing 2 x 30kW DC chargers in Matamata, Waikato.
ChargeNet NZ will install or upgrade six 75kW DC fast chargers across five sites in Motueka, Tairua, Blenheim, Cromwell and Waihi to support holidaying traffic and regional adoption, with the capacity to charge four EVs at each location.
Jump Charging are installing a 75kW dual head fast charger at the Mandeville Village shopping centre in Mandeville village to fill a gap for users at a location which is central and accessible.
Network Waitaki are adding 3 x 50kW chargers in the Oamaru Harbour area which will mean there will be 4 x 50kW chargers at this site.
Round Nine - Public Charging Infrastructure - Journey Charging
ChargeNet NZ will install six 150kW DC fast chargers across three sites in Greytown, Paeroa and Whakatne to support holidaying traffic and regional adoption, with the capacity to charge four EVs at each location
Round Ten - Public Charging Infrastructure - Hubs
Z Energy Limited
Papamoa - Hub site at BP Papamoa $795,000: five 150kw Tritium charging units, capable of charging up to 10 vehicles at once
Tirau - Hub site at BP Tirau $671,000: four 150kw Tritium charging units, capable of charging up to eight vehicles at once
Wanaka - Hub site at BP Wanaka $377,000: three 150kw Tritium charging units, capable of charging up to six vehicles at once.
Round Ten total of 35 chargers, able to charge up to 52 vehicles at once.