The NSW Government Wants to Build 30,000 EV Chargers Over the Next 3 Years

The NSW Government Wants to Build 30,000 EV Chargers Over the Next 3 Years

The NSW government has announced a plan to support the construction of 30,000 electric vehicle chargers across NSW between now and 2026, an ambitious project that will see a massive increase in charging locations across the state.

This is the latest plan from the state government to support EV charging. Before this, the NSW government announced it would be supporting evenly-spaced fast-charging networks (more on that below), regional chargers and a $38 million plan to support apartment, kerbside and public charging locations. The cost of these investments up to this point has totalled $209 million, according to this recent announcement.

To support the uptake of apartment and kerbside chargers, the state government has announced that it will review strata laws to allow for easier EV charger installation in apartment complexes and plan laws that will allow for easier installation of power pole-mounted and parking meter chargers. The government is also planning to install EV chargers at transit hubs (such as commuter car parks at train, bus and ferry stations).

The Minister for Planning and Homes Anthony Roberts said that the state government is “only days away” from streamlining laws to allow for easier kerbside and apartment charger installation.

“We know that 30 per cent of drivers can’t access off-street parking and will rely on public chargers, which is why we are cutting red tape to roll them out even faster,” Roberts said.

“These reforms will make it as easy as possible for people living in one of the 84,000 apartment buildings in NSW to install a charger, without passing on unfair costs to other residents,” Minister for Fair Trading Victor Dominello added.

Dominello also said that the government will work on the development of ‘right to charge’ strata reforms, which would allow for apartment owners to pay for the installation of EV chargers, ensuring also that building managers can’t unreasonably refuse them.

Eight transport hubs have been selected for electric vehicle charging locations for the first stage of charger rollout. This includes:

  • Barclay Road (North Rocks) commuter carpark
  • Beverly Hills commuter carpark
  • Emu Plains commuter carpark
  • Revesby commuter carpark
  • Riverwood commuter carpark
  • St Marys commuter carpark
  • Warwick Farm commuter carpark
  • West Ryde commuter carpark.

In the Electric Vehicle Council’s 2022 report on EV uptake in Australia, the council noted that NSW was well ahead in rolling out EV chargers, and that it was leading the way for policy and grants. According to the report, NSW has 715 EV charging sites, while Victoria is second at 475 and Queensland third at 433.

Considering that we’re in an election year (NSW will go to the polls on March 25, 2023), today’s announcement does note that this plan would be pursued by a re-elected Liberal and Nationals government. Gizmodo Australia has reached out to the NSW Labor party to ask if this plan is supported.

Keep in mind that this plan is largely separate from the previously announced fast charging plan for NSW, as it is talking about several different electric vehicle charging types (including residential chargers) and not just fast chargers networked across major highways and suburban areas.

Back in October, the NSW government announced the co-funding of 500 electric vehicle chargers over the next two years, and more than 1,000 electric vehicle charging stations across the state over the next four years.

This funding package was the first of a larger NSW EV charging plan announced back in February, which would see more than 1,000 chargers rolled out across the state over four years. Ampol, BP, Evie, Tesla, the NRMA and Zeus Renewables were all successful in the initial round of funding, with the goal of having fast and ultra-fast chargers placed 5km apart from each other in metropolitan areas and no more than 100km apart on major roads and highways across NSW.

“This investment will see the largest, fastest and most comprehensive public EV charging network in Australia,” NSW Treasurer and Minister for Energy Matt Kean said at the time.

“Each of these stations will contain a minimum of two ultra-fast EV charging bays of 350kW capacity, and two fast charging bays of 175kW, with some stations containing up to 15 bays.”

Typically, fast chargers across Sydney and Newcastle offer 50kW charging power, although ultra-fast charging stations are capable of 350kW. This is supposedly powerful enough to charge to optimal range in under 10 minutes (supposedly 350 kilometres in 10 minutes). This, however, disregards that some cars can only charge to a maximum charging speed below 350kW. For example, the Polestar 2 can only charge to a maximum of 150kW when using an ultra-fast charger, which makes charging much slower than what is being claimed.

I’m excited to see more chargers across NSW and to hopefully not queue up to get an EV charged up and ready to go when on a long drive.

If you’re interested in buying an electric vehicle, you can check out new ones here or check out government incentives here.

This article has been updated since it was originally published.

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