By the year 2022, the UK government will require that new homes and buildings install electric vehicle charging points.

With that, the government believes it will lead to over 145,000 charging points being installed across the country each year.

The regulation will apply to places such as new-build supermarkets, workplaces, and buildings undergoing major renovations.

This is UK’s move to switch to electric cars while banning petrol and diesel cars sales by the year 2030.

Announcing the new laws at the Confederation of British Industry’s conference on Monday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the UK was going to “radically” change its cars, trucks, buses, and other modes of transport.

“The force driving that change won’t be government, it won’t even be business…it will be the consumer. It will be the young people of today, who can see the consequences of climate change and will be demanding better from us.”

However, Labor has stated that the announcement failed to address the “appalling” geographical divide in available charging points.

“London and the South East have more public car charging points than the rest of England and Wales combined. Yet there is nothing here to help address this.

“Nor is there help so lower and middle-income families can afford electric vehicles or the investment required to build the Gigafactories we need,” Labour said.

The government said the new laws will “make it as easy as refueling a petrol or diesel car today”.

The move is also meant to help make room for a simpler way to pay to charge vehicles via contactless payment methods while also introducing rapid charging points.

Man charging car at work

Britain currently has about 25,000 charging points, but the Competition and Markets Authority has said it could need 10 times as many before 2030.

The UK wants to cut its carbon emissions. Cars and taxis account for 16% of the UK’s emissions according to 2019 research.

In fact, many automakers are planning to go fully electric as soon as 2025 and 2030 while American automaker Ford said all vehicles sold in Europe by 2030 will be fully electric.

However, four of the world’s biggest carmakers, Volkswagen, Toyota, Renault-Nissan, and Hyundai-Kia failed to sign a COP 26 summit pledge to only sell zero-emissions cars and vans by 2035.

EV sales in the UK are booming with these types of cars accounting for about 10% of cars sold in 2020 compared to 2.5% back in 2018.

Chart showing the number of electric cars sold in the UK since 2015

The lack of charging infrastructure is but a big concern in the country which is part of the reasons why the UK government has made the law about new buildings also having EV charging points.

The Policy Exchange think tank has warned the rollout of charging points has fallen way behind and said there is a risk of “charging blackspots” in small towns or even rural areas.

Mike Childs, Friends of the Earth’s head of policy, welcomed the government’s announcement, adding that electric vehicles had a “significant role to play in building a zero-carbon future”.

“New housing should also include secure cycle storage and access to high-quality public transport, to provide real alternatives to driving and help cut congestion,” Childs added.

The UK government also confirmed investing over UK£10M which will be used to fund a new hydrogen project at the country’s largest onshore wind farm near Glasgow.

The cash injection will help the Whitelee green hydrogen project develop the UK’s largest electrolyzer – a system that converts water into hydrogen gas as a way to store energy and supply, local transport providers, with zero-carbon fuel.