UK Government Publishes Smart Charging Action Plan

The UK government and Ofgem have released a plan that would benefit electric vehicle owners by making it cheaper for them to drive their vehicles and by offering an avenue by which they could lower their energy bills.

The Electric Vehicle Smart Charging Action Plan was published on 17 January to highlight how the UK could optimise the benefits from smart charging and make it the preferred long-duration method by 2025.

UK Smart Charging
New plan sets out steps to unlock the potential of smart electric vehicle charging

Smart charging allows motorists to charge electric vehicles when electricity is cheaper or cleaner. It can also let consumers power their home using the electricity stored in their electric vehicle during off-peak periods, or sell it back to the grid for profit.

The government estimates that high mileage motorists could save up to 1,000 GBP a year through smarter charging.

Ofgem Director for Strategy and Decarbonisation Neil Kenward said:

“As an energy regulator, we’re helping create the infrastructure to deliver Britain’s net zero future at the lowest cost to customers. This latest innovative plan will help to maximise the benefits of smart charging, offer vital savings to consumers and reduce the overall cost of energy by seizing the opportunities to use batteries to both power homes and fuel the wider grid.”

The government has also announced 16 million GBP in funding from the Net Zero Innovation Portfolio (NZIP) to advance the development of relevant technologies.

Funded projects include a smart street lamppost to allow motorists to access smart charging on the move, and technologies to enable domestic appliances, such as heat pumps and electric vehicle charge points and batteries, to become integrated into a smarter energy system.

These projects were selected through the V2X (Vehicle to Everything) Innovation Programme and the Interoperable Demand-Side Response (IDSR) Programme.

Energy and Climate Minister Graham Stuart said:

“We want to make smart charging an easier choice for drivers of electric vehicles, whether that is charging on the driveway, at the workplace, or parked on the street. To do that we need to build new network infrastructure at pace, using the latest available technologies.

“Today’s plan sets out how we will work with Ofgem and industry to kickstart the market for smart charging, which we are backing up with £16 million in innovation funding. This will let people take control of their energy usage, in the most convenient and low-cost way.”

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