Mayor sets out plans for London’s electric vehicle future (2023)

  • Sadiq: “Get ready for ‘electric revolution in capital’s transport”
  • Plan ensures London continues to be a world leader with an innovative network of rapid charging hubs across the city
  • First EV charging hub to be operational by the end of 2019

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has set out his plans for a major expansion of London’s electric vehicle-charging network to ensure the capital continues to be one of the world’s leading zero-emission cities.

To tackle the twin dangers of London’s toxic air crisis and the climate change emergency, the Mayor has brought together the public and private sector to deliver the electric vehicle infrastructure Londoners need. This includes commitments by businesses and retailers to transform EV charging provision in London over the coming years.

Sadiq declared: “We need to reject the fossil fuels of the past and embrace an electric revolution in London’s transport.”

London’s plan follows the Mayor’s establishment of the world’s first Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Taskforce, bringing together representatives from business, energy, infrastructure, government and the London boroughs. The past year has seen more than 140 organisations contribute to the work of the Taskforce.

London is at the forefront of the zero-emission revolution with more than 20,000 electric vehicles, 1,700 electric taxis and Europe’s largest electric bus fleet. Today’s plan builds on TfL’s successful rollout of over 175 rapid charge points across the city (delivering a full charge in 20 - 30 minutes) and a growing network of over 1,100 lamp post charging points delivered by boroughs in residential areas.

(Video) Mayor sets out plans for London’s electric vehicle future

This has been complemented by the roll out of the world’s first ever Ultra Low Emission Zone, enforcing tough new emission standards in central London which is helping drive companies to electrify their fleets.

Currently the roll out of the charging infrastructure is in the line with the demand for electric vehicles but London needs an electric revolution. This plan estimates the number of charge points required in the next five years, based on different scenarios for the growth of EVs and looks at how this can be delivered with less public subsidy and without installing points which are underused or outdated.

Making it easier for Londoners to make the switch from diesel to electric cars is a key part of reducing toxic traffic emissions and realising the Mayor’s ambition of becoming a zero-emission city. The Taskforce and other industry partners will support the Mayor in driving forward a number of initiatives in the plan including:

  • Installing the next generation of ultra-rapid charging points at London petrol stations later this year.
  • Delivering five flagship charging hubs, with the ability for multiple cars to quickly be charged in one place. The first of these hubs will be operational in the heart of the Square Mile by the end of the year.
  • A new ‘one-stop-shop’ for Londoners to request new charging infrastructure from their local authority in areas of high demand led by London Councils, making it easier for drivers to switch to electric vehicles.
  • Expanding electric car clubs and bringing more vehicles to market, offering greater choice to Londoners and businesses.
  • New online smart tools to ensure London’s energy grid continues to keep pace with demand and to help unlock private sector investment.

Speaking at the launch of the London EV Infrastructure Delivery Plan at the Institution of Engineering and Technology today, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan said: “London’s air is so dirty and polluted that it amounts to nothing less than a serious public health crisis. It breaches legal limits and blights the lives of Londoners, resulting in thousands of premature deaths every year.

“We are also facing a climate emergency that threatens the long-term security and wellbeing of every Londoner.

“We need to reject the fossil fuels of the past and embrace an electric revolution in London’s transport. To truly transform the quality of our air and to tackle the climate crisis London must move away from petrol and diesel cars, with their catastrophic impact on the environment, and towards zero- emission vehicles.

“I want London to lead the world in this ambition, with all new cars and vans on London roads to meeting these standards by 2030, not 2040 as the government is proposing.

“To make this vision a reality we must make sure all Londoners have access to the essential infrastructure required to run and maintain an electric vehicle. This is a massive operation and can only be achieved if the public and private sector come together to deliver London’s electric future.”

(Video) Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London - "We want an Electric Vehicle revolution!"

The plan outlines how London is on track to deliver the necessary infrastructure for a radical growth in electric vehicles, which estimates show could increase from around 20,000 today to over 330,000 by 2025. This will be driven by a combination of new low-emission regulations, supportive policy at all levels of government and a decrease in the cost of electric vehicles.

London currently hosts 25 per cent of the UK’s electric vehicle charge points - more than any other UK region, with 2,400 public chargers spread over 1,200 locations. The Mayor has made the installation of rapid charge points (delivering a full charge in 20-30 minutes) a priority, to encourage high-mileage drivers to switch to electric vehicles.

London’s rapid charging network far exceeds major cities such as New York, Madrid and Amsterdam and the city is now recognised as one of 25 capitals around the world, accounting for half of all electric vehicles.

Christina Calderato, Head of Transport Strategy & Planning for TfL, said: “London’s toxic air reduces the length and quality of lives across the city. Improved electric vehicle infrastructure can support more essential trips being made using zero-emission transport, which will help clean up the air.

“The Mayor’s Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Delivery Plan shows how important it will be for the whole sector to work together to foster the expected uptake of electric vehicles. We have already delivered 183 rapid charging points with 300 on the way by the end of next year. It is fantastic to see collaboration with partners already happening through the taskforce.“

London Boroughs have installed more than 1,100 overnight residential charge points as part of the ‘Go Ultra Low City’ partnership between the GLA, TfL and London Councils.

Councillor Julian Bell, Chair of London Councils' Transport and Environment Committee, said: “Electric vehicles play an important role in our ambition for zero emission transport in London. As the city grows, pan-London transport infrastructure improvements are essential to prevent environmental damage and adverse health effects. Investing in electric vehicle infrastructure is necessary to ensure that the city’s residents and businesses can more easily adopt cleaner and greener modes of transit.

“We are proud to be part of initiatives such as the Go Ultra Low City Scheme (GULCS), which encourage London residents to switch to electric vehicles. GULCS has already helped boroughs install over 1,100 new residential charging points across the capital, with many more on the way. Delivering more charging points is also one of London Councils’ Pledges to Londoners, and demonstrates our commitment to creating a more liveable and inclusive city for everyone. ”

(Video) London May Be Emission-Free By 2050

Jasmine Whitbread, London First chief executive, said:“Air quality is a critical issue for the quality of life of Londoners. We have always supported moves to tackle congestion and emissions, and the infrastructure has to be in place.

“These measures will go some way to making it simpler for individual consumers and businesses to access charging points and boost take-up of electric cars, which will help keep London as an attractive place to live and work.”

Today’s event also coincided with a significant milestone for the London Electric Vehicle Company, who showcased their new electric van based on London’s iconic electric black cab. The van will go on sale later next year helping to offer more choice to businesses wanting to go electric.

London Electric Vehicle Company CEO Joerg Hofmann, said: “The Mayor’s announcement today marks a major milestone in the creation of a robust and capable EV charging network in the UK’s capital.

“The news comes at a time when charging infrastructure is at the top of LEVC’s agenda as we continue to innovate and produce zero-emission capable commercial vehicles that offer new solutions to the evolving green logistics market, such as our new van that was revealed earlier today.”

Steve McNamara, General Secretary of the Licensed Taxi Drivers' Association, said: “The London Taxi trade has already invested over £100 million in new electric taxis. The taxi fleet is transitioning at the rate of 40 new clean cabs every week and all of these vehicles need access to Rapid Charge Points.

“We are pleased to support The mayors visionary strategy in bringing together the private and public sector to deliver the infrastructure needed to ensure that London has not only the best taxi service in the world but the cleanest!”

Steve Garelick, London Regional Organiser for the GMB union said: “GMB are keen to endorse the mayors vision of a cleaner and healthier environment for Londoners and it's visitors. London leads and others follow we are pleased to have been involved in helping plan for everyone’s future and hope that we can find cost effective solutions that suit all needs throughout London and its environs.”

(Video) Environment Committee - Electric vehicles and the London Plan

UK Power Networks CEO Basil Scarsella, said: “We are supporting the Mayor of London’s commitment to improving London’s air quality with actions, not words. By enabling at least five state of the art flagship rapid charging hubs in the next couple of years, UK Power Networks in partnership with TfL will be delivering reliable, fast and available charging infrastructure for Londoners. Our map will help infrastructure investors and local authorities find the most cost-efficient locations to connect charge points to the electricity network.

“Through this collaborative cross industry initiative, London is leading the way in establishing the infrastructure we need to enable the low carbon transport revolution. With the vast majority of electric vehicle charging happening on the distribution network we have a duty to go above and beyond so we are proud to be supporting the Mayor of London’s vision.”

The growth in the number of electric vehicles in London will be driven by a combination of new low emission regulations, a decrease in the cost of electric vehicles and many private hire fleets transitioning to electric vehicles.

Jonathan Hampson, General Manager for Zipcar UK, said: “It’s clear that London needs, not only cleaner cars, but fewer cars. Electric car sharing therefore has to be part of the answer to London’s future mobility needs.

“Zipcar UK has outlined plans to transition to a fully electric fleet by 2025 and we started that process last year with the launch of 325 fully electric e-Golfs which, in just the first nine months, were used by over 15,000 Londoners.

“We are driving the change that London has to make but, to go further, the rapid growth of a charging infrastructure is a pre-requisite and that's why we're delighted by and fully support the Mayor of London's ambition.”

Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, said:“The Mayor’s plan rightly recognises that delivering a recharging network on the scale and complexity envisaged for London will involve a multitude of players, a large number of whom, including ourselves, have been pleased to be part of this taskforce.”


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4. Is road user charging the future for London? - Transport Committee
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5. Hydrogen cars: a greener future for London? - BBC London
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6. Leading a Sustainable Economic Future: The United Kingdom and Los Angeles
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