Electric vehicles charge hopes of regional Victorian recovery
AS VICTORIANS START TO plan post-lockdown road-trips, a new network of electric vehicle (EV) chargers launching today will make it easier for EV drivers to tour Victoria’s beautiful regions.
The network of more than 20 electric vehicle chargers is being rolled out across 17 sites in Central and Western Victoria.
The ‘Charging the Regions’ launch coincides with inaugural World Electric Vehicle Day today, which celebrates the enormous surge in electric transport across the globe.
Local EV advocates say that the charging network, the first of its kind in the area, will help to drive much-needed tourism to regional Victorian towns to support recovery from the economic downturn. Charging networks were identified as a key economic stimulus measure in Beyond Zero Emissions’ 1 Million Jobs Plan.
It is hoped that the success of the network will see it extended across all regional and rural shires in the state.
Rob Law, executive officer of Central Victorian Greenhouse Alliance, the local government network that is driving the project, says that increasing the charger network will help to boost jobs numbers and EV uptake in regional Victoria.
“The Charging the Regions network will ensure that regional Victoria does not get left behind as more and more electric cars hit the road,” he said.
“It will boost jobs, stimulate EV tourism and encourage people who live in regional Victoria to think about ‘going electric’ on their next vehicle purchase. This is a great example of a positive economic stimulus project delivered in partnership between the Victorian Government and local councils.”
The project is being delivered by the Central Victorian Greenhouse Alliance in partnership with the Victorian Government and the following councils:
Mildura Rural City Council
Swan Hill Rural City Council
Gannawarra Shire Council
Buloke Shire Council
Mount Alexander Shire Council
City of Greater Bendigo
Campaspe Shire Council
Greater Shepparton City Council
Loddon Shire Council
Central Goldfields Shire Council
Wellington Shire Council
Whittlesea Shire Council
The Victorian Government is contributing $664,000 towards building charging stations across six local government areas in north western Victoria, with the additional six councils providing their own funding for charging stations. Charging stations will be located in priority locations on council owned land.
Beyhard Jafari, CEO of the Electric Vehicle Council, said that the project represents a great example of positive economic stimulus.
“More charging stations are part of what is indeed to kickstart the electric vehicle revolution in regional Victoria,” he said.
“A recent report found that 68% of Australians want governments to provide more public charging infrastructure. This is a great stimulus project that can help us build back better.”
The Central Victorian Greenhouse Alliance has released an open tender that will close on 6 October 2020 for the supply, installation and maintenance of the charging network. The tender is requesting a mix of 25kw and 50kw DC chargers across the participating councils.