Fine Gael’s Colm Markey has welcomed the European Parliament’s call for the rollout of car charging stations every 60km on main roads in the EU by 2026.
MEPs backed the proposal during a vote in Strasbourg today (Wednesday October 19th). They also called on member states to present their plans on the deployment of alternative fuels infrastructure by 2024.
The Midlands-North-West MEP said, “In June MEPs voted to ban diesel and petrol cars by 2035. There’s no point in forcing people to go electric if they can’t charge their vehicle so it’s imperative that we speed up the deployment of alternative fuels infrastructure. These proposals mean that car charging stations will have to be rolled out every 60km on main roads at a minimum. Ireland is already lagging behind. Currently, around 70 per cent of charging points in the EU are in three countries only – the Netherlands, France and Germany. Today’s vote sends out a clear message to the Irish Government to get moving.”
He added, “Electric vehicles and easily accessible charging points play a key role in decarbonising the transport sector. By expanding the infrastructure more quickly, we’re giving people more options while reducing emissions even further. I do however have major concerns about grid capacity. We need to ensure the grid can support the energy demand for EV charging and I am calling on the Minister for the Environment to make it a key priority.”
“The proposals from the European Parliament aim to ensure that the recharging of vehicles is transparent, accessible and user-friendly. Our plans are more ambitious than what was set out by the Commission and I hope member states get on board during the next phase of the process. Just like agriculture, other sectors need to come up with meaningful actions to meet their emission reduction targets and these plans will go a long way in achieving those goals”, Markey concluded.