Wiltshire making the switch to electric vehicles

Transport Minister Baroness Kramer is in Wiltshire today (30 October 2014) to see for herself how the county is preparing its towns for plug-in vehicles.

Supported by a £225,000 government grant, Wiltshire County Council is installing rapid chargepoints across the county which can top up a plug-in car or van in just 20 minutes.

The units are at key sites near major routes in Salisbury, Warminster, Melksham, Trowbridge, Corsham and Chippenham and the council has provided match funding of £75,000 towards the project.

The network was officially opened by Baroness Kramer at the Corsham chargepoint. Continue reading Wiltshire making the switch to electric vehicles

You’re wrong Baroness Kramer. Electric Car is actually intended for ALL trips: both short and Long! #BBCRadio4

Dear Baroness Kramer, Electric Car is actually intended for ALL trips, this DOES also does mean travelling many trips without limiting the owners’s freedom of movement, away from Home “night-time charging”.

However in recent BBC Radio 4 interview, “You and Yours” – You, Baroness Kramer, UK Minister of State for the Department of Transport suggested that electric cars are “not designed for long travels”, forgive my paraphrase…

The public rapid chargers are intended for occasional use. They’re not a standard way of recharging your car

– said Baroness Kramer.

It’s a bad way to “start the sell” by implying you should not be venturing out far from home due to charging [infrastructure] limitation(s).

To give you context, this interview was taking place along with David Martell, CEO of Chargemaster, which recently introduced Rapid Charging price tariffs, with half hour of charging a typical nissan leaf at eye watering £7.50!

Drawing the full picture here in example; nissan Leaf 2011 rapid charging from 10%-80% (you always arrive with “some” charge, and 80% -that’s the advised limit to keep batteries healthy) – so some 70% of charge (70% of 24kwh battery pack that is) – is done in under half hour at such a “Rapid Charger.
Thus their great convenience on long distance & [any] frequent travel.

Translating this “70%” roughly into miles and we get some 60 odd miles on the motorway VS a very sensible 60! (Keen) MPG diesel car, which would cost roughly £6 per such gallon.

Yes that’s roughly £1.50 odd more expensive than a tank of diesel!

And yet Baroness Kramer suggest this is an odd-trip cost…. While not even owning a electric car to base the “odd”-ness of that driving cost on.

Let me make it clear.
It’s a car, just like any other car, which just happens to be electric.

Charging at home, if even possible for many flat/leasehold properties which so not have garage/drive for parking or lease-property home charger installation limitations, as you can see may not be appropriate for everyone.

We, drivers have cars for the purpose of FREEDOM of mobility, and not to be limited to a particular town or in this case “home charging” as Baroness Kramer suggests.

Thus. It’s utter nonsense.
A trip from London to Manchester would cost More in an electric Car than a conventional Car.
I have done this trip in my nissan leaf. It’s great. It merely adds a hour to the trip,
But I’m willing so deal with it thanks to free charging (thank you Ecotricity!) and will pay sensible dues when it comes to time.

But to outright suggest that this ChargeMaster penalising charging tariff is “normal as expected”, with more-expensive-that-diesel-alternative fees? It’s just cruel. It’s backwards logic here.

Furthermore, To add insult to injury, all these RapidCharger points being installed, by ChargeMaster were as a result of government grants! So where are the tax-payer benefits on this? Especially if such systems are to be “shunned”.
https://speakev.com/threads/chargemaster-polar-and-mk-council-2014-ev-charge-and-park-pricing.1410/page-13

So Where is “fair”?
Such lacking apparent support of the scheme as it seems and it will halt the growth of this electric car generation in it’s tracks!

Contrary, inter-town and intercity electric car travel should be welcomed and indeed celebrated.

There are enough “range anxiety” speculations and misconceptions which limit the speed of Ev industry growth. As a transport minister advising that “electric car is not “designed” for long trips, is foolish.

Let me remind you on proven cases that it IS:

http://www.teslamotors.com/blog/first-across-us-supercharger
See coast to Coast in a Tesla – which is a better bigger Ev but indeed covers a vastly larger distance of the whole continent!

= and =

http://pod-point.tumblr.com
#catuk campaign partnering with Renault and Pod-Point has done over 2000 such miles as well.

What Now
The point of the matter, as an UK Minister of State for the Department of Transport, Baroness Kramer, I would implore you to promote and encourage the uptake of ZeroEmission vehicles for your environment sake; pollution, health implications and noise pollution reduction by incentivising convenient of “long” electric vehicle travel and not suggesting limitations to “charging at home”.

As an electric car driver, we understand that incentives are not free forever and we should consider paying our dues. That’s fine. What’s fair is fair. One such company CYC http://chargeyourcar.org.uk [allows] started charging pro-rata 0.15-0.20/kWh.

Other examples include £5 per such rapid charge or 45 minutes (kWh rate of charge varies with external temperatures and battery health status)

In short, Electric car driving in it’s ideal configuration should be on par with petrol station convenience AND cost at the very LEAST, if not cheaper to encourage such vehicle transition from fossil to electric vehicles, not the other way round if this is to work!

I would go one further to suggest that gov decision makers regarding electric car schemes and grants Have to own/Drive an electric car themselves, to understand the nuances of this industry. Otherwise there will be always a disparity between the facts and “suggestions”, the feet and the brain.

Yours,
@evmeerkat